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Boffins shrink light-twister to silicon scale, multiply bandwidth 10x

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Brad Patterson
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This could be how light becomes a more common data carriage medium

We've known for some time that the orbital angular momentum OAM of light colloquially known as twisted light can be modulated to carry information, but until now, it's only been demonstrated on large-scale laboratory lasers.

That's changed with work from the State University of New York at Buffalo and the Polytechnic University of Milan, with boffins building and demonstrating a micron-scale OAM semiconductor.

If it worked at scale and in the field, an OAM scheme could be added to existing modulation, getting what Buffalo reckons would be a tenfold increase in capacity.

In twisted light , the wavefront presents as a helix there's a decent Wikipedia entry .

Giving different beams different orbital values – different twists – means they can share a medium like an optical fibre without interfering with each other.

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