It seems like just yesterday that 10 Gb/s (OC-192) transmission was the norm in data rates with slower data rates
disappearing! The particular bit-rate jump to 40 Gb/s (OC-768) is not a trivial task. Electronic designers now face
serious complexities as they push the technology to the limit. Issues such as chromatic dispersion and polarization mode
dispersion are placing more stringent requirements on fiber optics and associated components. The requirement to
gather and transfer data at faster and faster rates has spurned an evolution in the thought processes of Photonic
engineers. It appears that to handle the ever-increasing bandwidths, Photonic techniques are the way to go!
Sophisticated analog-to-digital converters and polymer-based modulator systems are now being designed and tested in
Air Force government laboratories. Only time will tell if these designs can handle the voluminous amounts of data!