European research project increases fiber-optical communication speed to 112Gbit/s
Successful field trails in Stockholm, Sweden
The European cooperation project HECTO has just been concluded with successful field trials with fiber-optical communication over several kilometers in the Stockholm, Sweden, at the record speed 112Gbit/s. The objectives of HECTO have been to develop transmitters and receivers for high-performance and high-speed but cost-efficient fiber-optical communication systems.
“This is a great sccuess; we have now developed a solution whereby you can increase the speed in the fiber-optic networks with a factor ten compared to traditional solutions used today,” associate professor Urban Westergren, at Royal Institute of Technology, KTH, in Kista, Sweden, who is the coordinator of HECTO. “This can be done in a straight-forward and cost-effective way.”
“The HECTO project started 2006, and has been partially financed by the European commission”, Urban Westergren continues. "We hope to see the first commercial products on the market within the coming years.”
The HECTO transmitters contain light-intensity modulators integrated with lasers which have been developed by KTH in cooperation with the Swedish company Syntune, Kista, and packaged by the company U2T Photonics, Berlin, Germany. The transmitters also contain electronic driver amplifiers and multiplexers which have been developed by the German research Institute Fraunhofer IAF, Freiburg.
The receivers in the HECTO transmission links have photodetectors integrated with electronic amplifiers developed by the Heinrich Hertz institute and packaged by U2T Photonics, both in Berlin, Germany. Receiver high-speed electronic circuits for electrical clock recovery and demultiplexing to lower speeds were developed by Fraunhofer IAF.
To ensure that the produced modules will meet the demands of the future market, technology application assessment were performed by University of Peloponnese, Greece. Nokia Siemens Networks in Munich, Germany, provided contacts with ongoing standardization in IEEE and ITU-T.
The field trials were conducted in the Stockholm area between Kista and Råsunda by the Swedish research institute Acreo. Successful transmission was accomplished over a total optical fiber length of several kilometers. After the end of the project, the industrial partners have plans to commercialize the HECTO transmitters and receivers in future measurement equipment and emerging fiber-optical communication systems based on serial 100Gbit/s Ethernet (100GbE) signals requiring 112Gbit/s including forward-error correction.