|Normal broadband cable supports data transfer at a speed of up to 30
megabits per second. But a multi-national team of scientists has
developed a method that transmits data 85 thousand times faster than
The team used twisted beams of light to transmit data at 2.56 terabits
per second. The researchers achieved this by using beam-twisting 'phase
holograms' to manipulate eight beams of light. A phased hologram
refracts light by means of different thicknesses of a transparent
As part of the experiment the researchers twisted each of the beams into
a DNA-like helical shape and propagated them in free space. Their
demonstration transmitted data over open space in a lab, by attempting
to simulate communications between satellites in space.
The work could potentially be used in the building of high-speed
satellite communication links and short free-space terrestrial links.
Further research could lead to ways the finding could be adapted for use
in fibre-optic cables that transmit much of the internet's information.