Editor in Chief
- Dec 30, 2010
- Reaction score
- Austin, TX
It's almost frightening how quickly technology advances sometimes. Here's a case in point: a couple of times last year, we did a story on newer more advanced wireless tech called, Advanced LTE. With Advanced LTE currently in testing we have seen that within the next couple of years we could see wireless data connections that hit 600-900 Mbps. To put it in perspective, that is about 15-20 times faster than our current fastest speeds on 4G LTE. However, a new breakthrough in wireless technology has just been achieved by a team of researchers at the University of Pittsburgh that could make even those speeds obsolete in a very short time. Hrvoje Petek, a physics and chemistry professor at the University of Pittsburgh in charge of the research has recently had a breakthrough in which wireless internet bandwidth could be 1,000 times faster than current 4G LTE!
Current technology transmits data in the gigahertz frequency; however Petek's team has been able to theoretically transfer information in the terahertz frequency of the electromagnetic spectrum. Here's a quote from the BGR article with some more details,
Petek’s discovery of “a physical basis for terahertz bandwidth” could potentially be used to leverage the “portion of the electromagnetic spectrum between infrared and microwave light” and transmit data at rates 1,000 times faster than today’s wireless standards, which are limited to the gigahertz frequency. “The ability to modulate light with such a bandwidth could increase the amount of information carried by more than 1,000 times when compared to the volume carried with today’s technologies,” Petek said. “Needless to say, this has been a long-awaited discovery in the field.”
There's an interesting bit of information on the fringe of the story that is even more mind-boggling. Supposedly, Petek and his team expected to hit the 15.6 THz in their experiments, using just traditional silicon; however, the team is actually aiming much higher than that by studying coherent oscillation of electrons. They believe that they will eventually be able to achieve wireless spectrum speeds in the petahertz frequency range by harnessing "light-matter interactions". With the right materials, they could leap-frog this new breakthrough and achieve speeds 1,000 times faster than their newest breakthrough! If you are doing the simple math, this means that it is possible within our lifetime, we will see internet data speeds 1 Million times faster than our current tech. Hmmm... Speculate on this. The philosophical potentialities are endless!