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Primeur weekly 2013-09-23

Exascale supercomputing

Supercomputers for all: The next frontier for Europe's high performance computing ...

The Cloud

DataDirect Networks ushers in a new era of scale, speed and data insight for web-scale and Big Data applications ...

Cybersecurity researcher joins the ranks of the 'brilliant' ...

IBM commits $1 billion to fuel Linux and open source innovation on Power systems ...

Siemens plans North American HR technology Cloud migration to Oracle Fusion HCM with help from KPMG ...

HP announces Cloud-driven enhancements to application and catabase archiving solution ...

EuroFlash

AMS-IX starts new regional Internet exchange hub in Mombasa, Kenya, in collaboration with KIXP ...

Altair announces most successful UK technology event to date ...

Graphene photodetector integrated into computer chip ...

PRACE pre-commercial procurement of whole system design for energy efficient HPC ...

Severo Ochoa (SO) programme at Barcelona Supercomputing Center ...

Quantum entanglement only dependent upon area ...

University of Leicester hosts national supercomputing meeting, showcasing science from the smallest and largest scales ...

USFlash

Six vendors complete test event to become part of OpenFabrics Alliance Interoperability Logo Programme ...

OpenFabrics Alliance announces formation of OpenFramework Working Group ...

DataDirect Networks and ASG partner to offer a private Cloud solution for high performance, high availability archive and collaboration ...

DataDirect Networks to power business-critical broadcast system servicing for Starz ...

Connecting the future ...

$50 million NSF grant to advance cyberinfrastructure for Big Data in life sciences ...

Supercomputing the transition from ordinary to extraordinary forms of matter ...

Cray adds large memory and shared memory solutions to its line of Cray CS300 cluster supercomputers ...

On the road to fault-tolerant quantum computing ...

Bold idea for 'Big Data' ...

NASA uses supercomputer to create future climate projections for the United States ...

Supercomputer sheds weight, gains mobility, and becomes "Server-on-the-Go" ...

Graphene could yield cheaper optical chips ...

Scaling up personalized query results for next generation of search engines ...

Graphene photodetector integrated into computer chip


TU Vienna
16 Sep 2013 Vienna - Today, most information is transmitted by light - for example in optical fibres. Computer chips, however, work electronically. Somewhere between the optical data highway and the electronic chips, photons have to be converted into electrons using light-detectors. Scientists at the Vienna University of Technology have now managed to combine a graphene photodetector with a standard silicon chip. It can transform light of all important frequencies used in telecommunications into electrical signals. The scientific results have now been published in the journalNature Photonics.

Both academia and the industry place high hopes in graphene. The material, which consists of a single layer of hexagonally arranged carbon atoms, has extraordinary properties. Two years ago, the team around Thomas Müller, Institute of Photonics, Vienna University of Technology, demonstrated that graphene is ideally suited to turn light into electrical current.

"There are many materials that can transform light into electrical signals, but graphene allows for a particularly fast conversion", stated Thomas Müller. So wherever large amounts of data are to be transmitted in a short period of time, graphene will in the future probably be the material of choice.

The researchers had to come a long way from the basic proof of what the material can do to actually using it in a chip - but now they succeeded. The Viennese team worked together with researchers from the Johannes Kepler University in Linz.

"A narrow waveguide with a diameter of about 200 by 500 nanometers carries the optical signal to the graphene layer. There, the light is converted into an electrical signal, which can then be processed in the chip", Thomas Müller explained.

There have already been attempts to integrate photodetectors made of other materials, such as Germanium, directly into a chip. However, these materials can only process light of a specific wavelength range. The researchers could show that graphene can convert all wavelengths which are used in telecommunications equally well.

The graphene photodetector is not only extremely fast, it can also be built in a particularly compact way. 20 000 detectors could fit onto a single chip with a surface area of one square centimetre. Theoretically, the chip could be supplied with data via 20 000 different information channels.

"These technologies are not only important for transmitting data over large distances. Optical data transmission also becomes more and more important for communication within computers", stated Thomas Müller. When large computer clusters work with many processor cores at the same time, a lot of information has to be transferred between the cores. As graphene allows switching between optical and electrical signals very quickly, this data can be exchanged optically. This speeds up the data exchange and requires much less electrical energy.

The paper "CMOS-compatible graphene photodetector covering all optical communication bands" by Pospischil et al. appears inNature Photonics(2013), doi:10.1038/nphoton.2013.240.
Source: Vienna University of Technology

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2013-09-23

Exascale supercomputing

Supercomputers for all: The next frontier for Europe's high performance computing ...

The Cloud

DataDirect Networks ushers in a new era of scale, speed and data insight for web-scale and Big Data applications ...

Cybersecurity researcher joins the ranks of the 'brilliant' ...

IBM commits $1 billion to fuel Linux and open source innovation on Power systems ...

Siemens plans North American HR technology Cloud migration to Oracle Fusion HCM with help from KPMG ...

HP announces Cloud-driven enhancements to application and catabase archiving solution ...

EuroFlash

AMS-IX starts new regional Internet exchange hub in Mombasa, Kenya, in collaboration with KIXP ...

Altair announces most successful UK technology event to date ...

Graphene photodetector integrated into computer chip ...

PRACE pre-commercial procurement of whole system design for energy efficient HPC ...

Severo Ochoa (SO) programme at Barcelona Supercomputing Center ...

Quantum entanglement only dependent upon area ...

University of Leicester hosts national supercomputing meeting, showcasing science from the smallest and largest scales ...

USFlash

Six vendors complete test event to become part of OpenFabrics Alliance Interoperability Logo Programme ...

OpenFabrics Alliance announces formation of OpenFramework Working Group ...

DataDirect Networks and ASG partner to offer a private Cloud solution for high performance, high availability archive and collaboration ...

DataDirect Networks to power business-critical broadcast system servicing for Starz ...

Connecting the future ...

$50 million NSF grant to advance cyberinfrastructure for Big Data in life sciences ...

Supercomputing the transition from ordinary to extraordinary forms of matter ...

Cray adds large memory and shared memory solutions to its line of Cray CS300 cluster supercomputers ...

On the road to fault-tolerant quantum computing ...

Bold idea for 'Big Data' ...

NASA uses supercomputer to create future climate projections for the United States ...

Supercomputer sheds weight, gains mobility, and becomes "Server-on-the-Go" ...

Graphene could yield cheaper optical chips ...

Scaling up personalized query results for next generation of search engines ...