Japan announced that a team of engineers from the National Institute Information & Communication Technology (NICT) research group had achieved a record-setting internet speed of 319 Terabits per second (Tb/s), doubling the previous world record.
The previous world record for internet speed was set in 2020 when UK and Japanese engineers partnered to make 178 Tb/s connection a reality. However, this engineering feat is overlooked by today's announcement that almost doubles the old record.
NICT scientists used optical fibers, small tubes that pass information using light, which are needed to achieve the record. Regular copper cables couldn't carry such speeds and would require much more complex infrastructure to work.
To achieve this record, the team had to use some special add-ons that are only familiar to the very skilled and educated engineers working with lasers. "We demonstrate the recirculating transmission of 552 x 25 GHz spaced channels covering >120 nm of S, C, and L-bands in a 125μm diameter, 4-core fiber, measuring a decoded throughput of 319 Tb/s at 3001 km", as the paper submission at the International Conference on Optical Fiber Communications says.
They have used a 552-channel comb laser that fires various wavelengths. Later on, these light streams are processed and amplified by new kinds of fiber amplifiers doped in thulium and erbium. The process that follows after amplification is the regular Raman amplification. While the workings of this approach are highly complex, the net result is that the achieved speed is a massive breakthrough.
The team could carry this speed for over 3000 kilometers and maintain the bandwidth it creates without any performance drops. The engineers said that even regular optical fiber infrastructure could support these types of speeds, but it would need to go through a few modifications first.
It's almost impossible to imagine this sort of raw bandwidth coming to our homes and offices; however, the applications and possibilities would be endless. We wouldn't hold our breath waiting on our local ISP to implement the tech any time soon, though.