NBN Co highlights record-breaking data transfer

German researchers achieve 26Tbps speeds, NBN Co uses results to push NBN

Professor Jürg Leuthold. (Photo: Gabi Zachmann).

Professor Jürg Leuthold. (Photo: Gabi Zachmann).

NBN Co has seized on a world-record-breaking data transfer experiment in Germany to highlight the potential of the National Broadband Network (NBN). Researchers at Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) optically transferred data at 26 terabits per second (Tbps) over 50 kilometres.

NBN Co’s Chief Technology Officer, Gary McLaren, said the record demonstrated the potential of a network like the NBN.

“The amount of data people are transferring across communications networks, especially video transmissions, is increasing all the time,” McLaren said in a statement.

“As fibre optic technology improves, so too will speeds and the amount of data that can be carried over the network we are building today.”

The team of KIT scientists led by Professor Jürg Leuthold beat their previous record of 10Tbps, which they achieved in 2010. “Our result shows that physical limits are not yet exceeded even at extremely high data rates,” Leuthold said in a statement.

“A few years ago, data rates of 26 terabits per second were deemed utopian even for systems with many lasers,” Leuthold said, “and there would not have been any applications. With 26 terabits per second, it would have been possible to transmit up to 400 million telephone calls at the same time. Nobody needed this at that time. Today, the situation is different.”

The results of the KIT research were published on Nature Photonics.

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