Imagine being able to download the entire Netflix library, as it stands, in less than a second. This is far from being commercially available any time soon, but the record for the fastest internet speed in the world is now set at 178 terabits per second (Tbps), that is 178,000,000 megabits per second.
To bring things in perspective, the fastest available speed to consumers currently is 10Gbps in Japan. Even the connection developed by United States’ Energy Sciences Network maxes out at 400Gbps.
Engineers at KDDI Research, University College London, and Xtera have developed new technologies to pass through more data through the existing optical fiber setup. Most of the current infrastructure is capable of up to 4.5THz bandwidth, and some new technologies had raised it to 9THz. This new system raises it to a whopping 16.8THz.
The wider bandwidth is the result of new Geometric Shaping (GS) constellations. In order to fit more information without interference, these patterns of signal combinations alter the brightness, phase, and polarization of the wavelengths. The hybrid system is a result of different combinations of existing amplifier technologies.
Since the setup utilizes the existing optic fiber setup, integrating this new technology would be relatively easier as well as cheaper in comparison to other experimental researches in this field. Just upgrading the amplifiers would do the job, there would be no need to replace the cables altogether.