When we look back to the marvel that computers have left our world with, starting with that super-big computer that had first been build, to the bulky desktop system, to our conventional laptops today, we cannot but hold in awe, the brilliant hallmark that computers now carry. With numerous advancements in the technology to build computers, we have a plethora of blueprints to make computers faster, more durable and more efficient.
Researchers and scientists from the University of Texas El Paso and University of Central Florida in the US have built a device that works on controlling light beams around curves that have twice the curvature that had previously been possible. This could potentially lead to the developing of superfast computers that could function a thousand times faster, transmitting data via light beams rather than electric signals.
The prototype of building a superfast computer using optical cables had long been proposed. But the research was kept on a hiatus because of the lack of devices that could control light beams around curves without significant losses in energy. Our conventional light waveguides such as optical fibres, can steer light across large distances and gradual turns, but if the curve is too steep, the light beams escape resulting in a loss of energy. Now, it is viable to send light signals around a curved trajectory.
The device built, resembles a plastic honeycomb and can turn beams of photons into optical wires that can bend around the small structures inside a computer. This structure is similar to a miniature lattice. When light is transmitted through the structure, it was found that the beams could be controlled through 90 degree bends that are twice as steep as had previously been possible, without any loss in the intensity.
The researchers are now working on increasing the steepness of the curves so that the light can be beamed across tiny electronic circuit boards without any loss of energy or data. This is a milestone in the study of optics so far and with successful research, we could possibly build super-fast computers that can run on optical signals.