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Researchers at the Institute of Photonic Chips publishes the breakthrough in Nature Photonics

October 15, 2021 | By IPC | Copyedited by Zhang Liu

Multiplexing is an important concept in the information age for generating, transmitting, processing and storing data bits for high capacity. For example, the use of the three-dimensional space can store more information bits than the two-dimensional space. Although, many physical principles could provide a platform for a space beyond the three-dimensional, the reality meets many challenges. Optical multiplexing is a fast-forward runner in this race because it is a greener and sustainable solution for the future.

The teams, let by Xiangping Li and Professor Min Gu, at Jinan University, Ludong University, South China Normal University, National University of Singapore, University of Shanghai for Science and Technology (USST), and Guangdong University of Technology have jointly published a paper to provide an innovative platform by optically twisting big data for a high storage capacity.

Professor Gu said “Twisting is an inherent physical property of light, behaving as helical propagation. The helicity is the so called orbital angular momentum (OAM), which can be physically used as an independent dimension to store information data bits. The degree of the helicity determines the capacity in this application”

Professor Gu said, the idea of using OAM for optical multiplexing in optical data storage was proposed in 2010 (Gu and Li, The road to multi-dimensional bit-by-bit optical data storage, Optics and Photonics News, July, 2010). He is pleased to see this magnificent idea has been experimentally implemented though it took more than 10 years to achieve the idea. Like any scientific pursuit, the key to success is persistent.

The paper “Synthetic Helical Dichroism for Six-Dimensional Optical Orbital Angular Momentum Multiplexing” is published in Nature Photonics (DOI :10.1038/s41566-021-00880-1) on October 14.

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