Andrew Weiner and Daniel Leaird found a way to put a single pulse of light into an arrayed wave guide grating and get a rapid-fire burst of 21 light pulses out of it, with each pulse separated by only two-trillionths of a second. It works similarly to a prism, separating white light by wavelength. The unique properties of the device allow generation of identical, wavelength-shifted pulse trains for communication and photonic signal processing. The discovery could help satisfy demand for increasing network bandwidths. The pair of Purdue University engineers say their device has transmission speeds that are ten times faster than anything currently available. "ISPs are primarily operating at 10 Gbytes/sec per channel, times very many wavelength channels," says Weiner. "Our work can impact higher speed systems, 100 Gbytes/sec per channel and above," he says. Wiener and Laird's idea is to build a module that takes parallel electric data input and converts it into a fast serial optical data stream suitable for fiber transmission. For more information, contact Weiner at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (765) 494-4709.
Everyone has had the experience of trying to scrape the last of the peanut butter or mayonnaise from the bottom of a glass jar without getting your hand sticky. Inventor Ron Jidmar thinks he has a solution to all of that nonsense with a flexible jar design that can be squeezed with one hand to lift contents from the bottom to the top of a jar or container, leaving the other hand free to scoop the contents out cleanly.
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