Alcatel-Lucent's research arm, Bell Labs, has announced that ongoing testing of its prototype real-time space-division multiplexed optical multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO-SDM) system could see the company attain speeds of 1 petabit per second in time for the arrival of 5G and the Internet of Things.
In what the company called a "major breakthrough", a trial of the 6x6 real-time MIMO transmission technology in New Jersey saw Bell Labs successfully remove for the first time crosstalk from multiple signals on the fibre supporting the six parallel optical signal paths using real-time processing.
"This experiment represents a major breakthrough in the development of future optical transport," Marcus Weldon, CTO of Alcatel-Lucent and president of Bell Labs, said.
"We are at the crossroads of a huge change in communications networks, with the advent of 5G wireless and cloud networking under way. Operators and enterprises alike will see their networks challenged by massive increases in traffic. At Bell Labs, we are continuously innovating to shape the future of communications networks to meet those demands."
The successful experiment used six transmitters and six receivers alongside real-time digital signal processing over coupled fibre stretching 60km in Bell Labs' global headquarters.