The world's fastest internet speed surpassed previous records by researchers at the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NIICT),In Japan. They were able to achieve 319 terabits per second. A year ago, engineers from Japan broke the previous record of 178 Tb/s.
The speed test was conducted in a lab using modern fiber-optic equipment. To protect the data inside, many fibre optics contain one core and a lot of cladding, or coating. The NICT system employed a four-core experimental strand of fibre optic cable that was about the same size as a standard fibre optic line in a cable that was about the same size as a standard fibre optic line.
In a paper about the experiment, NICT stated, "For early adoption of [space division multiplexing] fibres in high-throughput, long-distance links, the 4-core [multi-core fibres] with standard cladding diameter is attractive, because it is expected to have mechanical reliability comparable to single-mode fibres and is compatible with the conventional cable infrastructure."
That's incredible. There is, however, still much work to be done
The data was looped by NICT using coiled fibre optic bits. Its goal is to simulate a signal or speed loss across a distance of 3,001 km (1,864 miles). That's incredible. However, there is still more work to be done, and getting to this point was difficult.
A 552-channel comb laser with different wavelengths was used by the researchers. To achieve the incredible speed, it was pushed by rare earth material amplifiers. That isn't inexpensive either. The developers anticipate that this will primarily be used to transport data across large distances. Rather than, say, allowing you to instantly download video games.
Nonetheless, the team believes the most significant achievement is the new 4-core optical fibre optic cable it developed. It's also about the same length as a standard fibre optic cable. NICT claims it will be simple to integrate into existing systems and will result in considerable speed increases. “The standard cladding diameter, 4-core optical fibre can be cabled with existing equipment,” they wrote in their paper. “It is hoped that such fibres will enable practical high data-rate transmission in the near future, contributing to the realisation of the backbone communications system, which is required for the spread of new communication services Beyond 5G,” they added.
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