Telecommunications and data communications markets are undergoing explosive growth, driven by the proliferation of cloud computing applications and pervasive demand of new mobile devices that make it easier to share pictures, music and video between friends, family and social media groups.
This increased bandwidth demand is driving the consolidation of datacenters, as smaller company operations cannot respond to these needs—either for lack of capital or due to technological complexity that they can’t satisfy. Even though the external data traffic is enormous and growing rapidly, the internal traffic within a data center can be 100x the input and output traffic of the datacenter. That traffic is projected to surpass 5 zettabytes by 2015. Datacenters have struggled to meet this demand and progress has been limited by the inherent physical limitations of inorganic materials like gallium arsenide and lithium niobate. Datacenter outsourcing represents approximately 25% of the industry and is a trend that continues to grow.
Only by lowering the cost per gigabit of transmission, and minimizing power requirements, can data centers meet this insatiable demand effectively and profitably. Lightwave Logic is targeting devices that could achieve “pennies per gigabyte” vs. the current “dollars per gigabyte” price point.
It is estimated that the average data center uses over 50 megawatts of power. In total, they are already consuming 1.5% of the entire world’s power generation. The cooling costs alone average about $26B per year. A need for high-speed, low cost devices is undeniable and organic nonlinear electro-optical and all-optical polymers have the inherent ability to satisfy these technological and economic challenges.
Inorganic materials are pure, crystalline compounds. Each element is “valence satisfied” which means no substitution or modification of the material or structure is possible. By contrast, organic materials are not valence satisfied and have the ability to be modified and improved.
Military / Defense
Even beyond the tremendous improvement in data rates that will be made possible with our organic optical polymer enabled devices, moving data in the form of light and processing imagery data in the optical domain has significant advantages that are of high interest for military applications.
Extremely fast optical processors called spatial light modulators (SLMs) will be able to capture images and convert them into optical thumbprints at speeds exceeding millions of frames per second versus the older LCD technology, which is capable of only 60 to 100 frames per second. These devices can be used for smart weaponry and show great potential for intelligence collection requirements. Additionally, our materials have potential in advanced forms of radar, or Laser Radar (LADAR) with a seeker capable of detecting and identifying specific features of an object with very high definition of up to 15cm resolution.
All-optical switches will have application in ultra-secure encryption technology. Little or no electricity is used to excite the polymer, which is one of the vulnerabilities of secure communications that can be breached.
In the future, organic nonlinear electro-optical and all-optical polymers such as ours will usher in new applications that have yet to be contemplated, but until now not technically feasible.
Digital computers are optimized for functions such as numeric calculations, but efficiently handling complex images can be vastly improved by the use of highly specialized computers that function entirely within the optical domain without the need for optical-to-digital conversions.
Optical or photonic computing uses photons produced by lasers or diodes for computation. Compared to electrons, which move in and out of transistors in current computers, photons allow higher bandwidth applications. Those applications could include creation of needed devices such as optical correlators that can be used for detecting and tracking objects.
Advanced optical computing projects have been developed for military and security applications, but commercialization has been limited by exceedingly high cost and technical limitations.
Lightwave Logic’s organic nonlinear electro-optical and all-optical polymers have the potential to make optical computing commercially feasible due to their innate ability to handle photons at ultra high speeds. This potentially reduces the technological complexity, making optical computing commercially viable.