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Made in IBM Labs: IBM Lights Up Silicon Chips to Tackle Big Data 2012.12.15

San Francisco, Calif., USA - December 10, 2012 - IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today a major advance in the ability to use light instead of electrical signals to transmit information for future computing. The breakthrough technology - called "silicon nanophotonics" - allows the integration of different optical components side-by-side with electrical circuits on a single silicon chip using, for the first time, sub-100nm semiconductor technology.

An IBM 90nm Silicon Integrated Nanophotonics technology is capable of integrating a photodetector (red feature on the left side of the cube) and modulator (blue feature on the right side) fabricated side-by-side with silicon transistors (red sparks on the far right).
Silicon Nanophotonics circuits and silicon transistors are interconnected with nine levels of yellow metal wires.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 

San Francisco, Calif., USA - December 10, 2012


• From the Lab to the Fab: Technology Breakthrough Demonstrates Feasibility of Silicon Nanophotonics for Chip Manufacturing

• Light Pulses Can Move Data at Blazing Speeds to Help Solve Bandwidth Limitations of Servers, Datacenters and Supercomputers

• After More Than a Decade of Research, Silicon Nanophotonics is Ready for Development of Commercial Applications



IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today a major advance in the ability to use light instead of electrical signals to transmit information for future computing.

The breakthrough technology – called “silicon nanophotonics” – allows the integration of different optical components side-by-side with electrical circuits on a single silicon chip using, for the first time, sub-100nm semiconductor technology.

Cross-sectional view of an IBM Silicon Nanophotonics chip combining optical and electrical circuits.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 
Silicon nanophotonics takes advantage of pulses of light for communication and provides a super highway for large volumes of data to move at rapid speeds between computer chips in servers, large datacenters, and supercomputers, thus alleviating the limitations of congested data traffic and high-cost traditional interconnects.


Dr. John E. Kelly, Senior Vice President and Director of IBM Research.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 
“This technology breakthrough is a result of more than a decade of pioneering research at IBM,”
said Dr. John E. Kelly, Senior Vice President and Director of IBM Research.
“This allows us to move silicon nanophotonics technology into a real-world manufacturing environment that will have impact across a range of applications.”

Information super highways inside an IBM Silicon Nanophotonics chip.
Angled view of a portion of an IBM chip showing blue optical waveguides transmitting high-speed optical signals and yellow copper wires carrying high-speed electrical signals.
IBM Silicon Nanophotonics technology is capable of integrating optical and electrical circuits side-by-side on the same chip.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 
The amount of data being created and transmitted over enterprise networks continues to grow due to an explosion of new applications and services.

Silicon nanophotonics, now primed for commercial development, can enable the industry to keep pace with increasing demands in chip performance and computing power.

Businesses are entering a new era of computing that requires systems to process and analyze, in real-time, huge volumes of information known as Big Data.

fluorescent polystyrene spheres 1
1-µm diameter fluorescent polystyrene spheres assembled in a corner array.
Optical bright field micrograph.
The patterns can be used to prevent the counterfeiting of luxury goods
.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 
Silicon nanophotonics technology provides answers to Big Data challenges by seamlessly connecting various parts of large systems, whether few centimeters or few kilometers apart from each other, and move terabytes of data via pulses of light through optical fibers.


Building on its initial proof of concept in 2010, IBM has solved the key challenges of transferring the silicon nanophotonics technology into the commercial foundry.

By adding a few processing modules into a high-performance 90nm CMOS fabrication line, a variety of silicon nanophotonics components such as wavelength division multiplexers (WDM), modulators, and detectors are integrated side-by-side with a CMOS electrical circuitry.

As a result, single-chip optical communications transceivers can be manufactured in a conventional semiconductor foundry, providing significant cost reduction over traditional approaches.

fluorescent polystyrene spheres 2
1-µm diameter fluorescent polystyrene spheres assembled in a corner array.
Fluorescence microscope image (channel overlay).
The position of single particles is predictable, their color is not.
Courtesy of IBM Research – Zurich
 
IBM’s CMOS nanophotonics technology demonstrates transceivers to exceed the data rate of 25Gbps per channel.

In addition, the technology is capable of feeding a number of parallel optical data streams into a single fiber by utilizing compact on-chip wavelength-division multiplexing devices.

The ability to multiplex large data streams at high data rates will allow future scaling of optical communications capable of delivering terabytes of data between distant parts of computer systems.

Further details will be presented this week by Dr. Solomon Assefa at the IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) in the talk titled, “A 90nm CMOS Integrated Nano-Photonics Technology for 25Gbps WDM Optical Communications Applications.”

Additional papers being presented by IBM at IEDM can be seen here
http://www-03.ibm.com/technology/news/iedm_2012.html  

Additional information on the project can be found
at http://www.research.ibm.com/photonics  


Contact information

Ari Entin
IBM Media Relations

1 (408) 391-6508
aentin@us.ibm.com  


Source: IBM

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/index.wss  



ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.12.08

IBM Completes Acquisition of Kenexa for $1.3 billion

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1362  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.11.18

IBM Makes $4 Billion in Financing Available for Business Partners; Announces New Mobile App to Speed Access to Credit within Minutes

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1352  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.11.11

IBM Delivers New Software to Help Organizations Build Smarter Products

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1347  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.10.07

IBM Completes Acquisition of Texas Memory Systems

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1325  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.09.29

Virginia M. Rometty Elected IBM Chairman

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1319  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.09.15

IBM Scientists First to Distinguish Individual Molecular Bonds

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1313  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.09.01

IBM Cloud to Deliver New Home Entertainment Services for Philips Smart TVs

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1305  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.08.13

IBM Scientists "Waltz" Closer to Using Spintronics in Computing

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1296  


ASTROMAN Magazine - 2012.07.26

IBM to Power New Generation Radio Telescope and Help Probe the Origins of the Universe

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1283  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.06.02

IBM Completes Acquisition of Vivisimo

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1246  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.05.02

New IBM Business Integration Software Helps Enterprises Accelerate Adoption of Social Business, Cloud and Mobile Technologies

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1231  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.04.01

IBM Increases Presence in Poland with New Branch Offices

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1213  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.03.10

Made in IBM Labs: Holey Optochip First to Transfer One Trillion Bits of Information per Second Using the Power of Light

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1197  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.03.03

IBM Forms Watson Healthcare Advisory Board

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1191  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2012.01.06

European Commission Awards IBM for Energy Efficient 27 IBM Data Centers

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1144  


ASTROMAN Magazine – 2011.12.03

IBM to Produce Micron's Hybrid Memory Cube in Debut of First Commercial, 3D Chip-Making Capability

http://www.astroman.com.pl/index.php?mod=magazine&a=read&id=1111  



ASTROMAN magazine


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