OPTICAL COMPONENTS

FEATURE

The tipping point for silicon photonics

The last decade was first characterised by a series of breakthroughs in the development of optical device building blocks using silicon photonics followed by a spate of silicon photonics, start-up acquisitions. More recently, silicon photonics has entered a quiet period. But in May, Acacia Communications, a maker of coherent optical modules and a silicon photonics specialist, made headlines by raising $103.5 million in a successful initial public offering (IPO).

FEATURE

Digital signal processors meet Moore’s law

Forty years ago, Intel co-founder Gordon Moore predicted that the number of transistors in an integrated circuit would double approximately every two years – a prediction that proved astonishingly accurate.

Optical communications has progressed at a much slower pace. Historically electronic components have become about 70 per cent faster each year, while in contrast the capacity of optical transmission systems and their optical interfaces has only increased by about 20 per cent annually.

FEATURE

Sharing of the wealth

Few industries are subject to the pace of innovation experienced in the telecom sector. But, as innovation escalates, so too does the cost of developing the novel technologies that help to keep companies ahead of their rivals. Optical components and module vendors in particular are feeling the pressure.

Feature

Will quantum-resistant encryption be enabled by quantum technology or mathematics? Helmut Griesser examines technologies for the post-quantum world

Feature

The increasing value of optical fibre assets in metropolitan areas is shaping the business models of companies that provide access to them, finds Andy Extance

Feature

As 2017 draws to a close, Scott Wilkinson looks ahead to what’s in store for the optical communications industry in 2018

Feature

An English city with a world-class 5G test-bed is about to make telecommunications history, reports Rebecca Pool