High-speed integrated photo
detector, smaller than
a grain of rice

Waseda University Professor Tetsuya Kawanishi and the Network System Research Institute at the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) developed together a high-speed integrated photo detector that simultaneously receives and converts optical signals into electrical signals. 32 light-receiving units are integrated into the photo detector, which is approximately 0.1mm2 in size, smaller than a grain of rice. It can receive optical signals from a number of channels all at once and convert them into high-speed electrical signals of over 10GHz per channel.

This photo detector integrates optical receivers and reduces size as well as electricity energy consumption of large-capacity optical communication devices at network mainlines and data centers, where massive data is processed with limited space and electricity. Moreover, the technologies employed in the photo detector could be applied in image sensors and laser rangefinders in the future.