Xerox Introduces MEMS Chip

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.

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"Our technology would let telecommunications companies install systems locally or even on utility poles," Kubby said.