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New model to map light may revolutionize telecommunications

August 28, 2011 - Washington

Physicists with the Institute of Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Lasers (IUSL) at The City College of New York have presented a new way to map spiralling light that could help harness untapped data channels in optical fibres.

Increased bandwidth would ease the burden on fibre-optic telecommunications networks taxed by an ever-growing demand for audio, video and digital media.

The new model, developed by graduate student Giovanni Milione, Professor Robert Alfano and colleagues, could even spur enhancements in quantum computing and other applications.

"People now can detect (light in) the ground channel, but this gives us a way to detect and measure a higher number of channels," said Milione.

With such heavy traffic funneled through a single channel, there is great interest in exploiting others that can be occupied by complex forms of light," he added.

The study was recently published in the journal Physical Review Letters.


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