Xerox introduced technology that promises to replace current data routing devices with all-optical devices.
The technology integrates an Optical Micros Electro Mechanical Systems (Optical MEMS) photonic switch with planar light circuits on a single silicon chip that the company said is small enough o fit on a fingertip.
The technology can fully route fiber optical signals on demand and at the edge of the network and allows switching in an all-optical domain vs. today's optical networking equipment, which must switch from the optical to the electronic domain, the company said.
"Our switch could help usher in a new era of undreamed-of Internet applications, changing the way we do business, seek information and find entertainment," said Joel Kubby, a technical manager at Xerox's Center for Research and Technology, in a statement.
The switch can compress an entire R-OADM (Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexing) into 2 cm x 1.5 cm in size, eliminating the need to have large racks of assembled equipment to transfer large amounts of data, according to the company.
"Our technology would let telecommunications companies install systems locally or even on utility poles," Kubby said.