Friday, December 7, 2007

IBM build “Silicon nanophotonics” Supercomputer-on-a-chip


Supercomputers may soon be the same size as a laptop if IBM brings to market research detailed on Thursday, in which pulses of light replace electricity to make data transfer between processor cores on a chip up to one-hundred times faster.

The technology, called silicon nanophotonics, replaces some of the wires on a chip with pulses of light on tiny optical fibers for quicker and more power-efficient data transfers between cores on a chip, said Will Green, research scientist at IBM.

The technology, which can transfers data up to a distance of a few centimeters, is about 100 times faster than wires and consumes one-tenth as much power, Green said. The lower power requirement should reduce operational costs for supercomputers, he said.''

"The silicon nanophotonic effort is a high-bandwidth, low-power technology for cores to communicate," Green said.

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