The so-called "holey optochip" makes use of dozens of holes drilled through the chip.

IBM smash one terabit optical speed barrier

IBM has demonstrated a prototype optical chip that smashed the one terabit per second speed barrier with an innovative through-hole design.

Big Blue engineers apparently drilled 48 holes in the back of a standard CMOS optical chip to provide optical pathways for 24 receive and transmit channels. IBM nicknamed the device the "holey optochip".

"Reaching the one trillion bit per second mark with the holey optochip marks IBM’s latest milestone to develop chip-scale transceivers that can handle the volume of traffic in the era of big data," said IBM boffin Clint Schow.

The technology is expected to find use in data centres and high-density cloud servers where bandwidth is king and the new ‘holey’ approach delivers eight times faster performance than the previous fastest available optical chips.

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