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OFC 2017: launches, talks reflect 'escalating growth'

29 Mar 2017

Los Angeles expo showcases latest developments in silicon photonics, 5G networking and Internet of Things.

The Optical Fiber Conference and Exposition (OFC), held at the Los Angeles Convention Center, closed its doors at the end of last week, having hosted more than 660 exhibitors, showcased over 1,100 peer-reviewed papers and welcomed 14,500 attendees.

As the optical communications industry has evolved far beyond its original aim of sending voice and datacoms down a fiber, the OFC conference and exhibition now provides a future-focused form for discussing optical innovations for hot networking growth segments like the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and more.

Reviewing this year’s extravaganza, Andrew Lord, optical research head at British Telecom and OFC 2017 General Co-Chair, commented, “With the industry experiencing escalating bandwidth growth from disruptive technologies such as VR and IoT, this year’s conference addressed how 5G and next-generation optical networks will evolve.

“OFC 2017 has continued the tradition of providing an excellent program that captures advances in research, development and engineering. The success of the OFC conference and exhibition reflects the hard work and dedication of many, including the technical program chairs, subcommittee chairs and committee members. Thank you to all the volunteers for their contribution to this world-class event.”

Research breakthroughs

Researchers from around the world presented industry leading technical peer-reviewed papers, including: Better By the Dozen: Highest Core Density Realized with 12 Core Single-Mode Optical Fiber — Achieving an industry high 12-cores within a single-mode optical fiber research team from NTT develop a new fiber design which will work to bring us closer to meeting the needs of a Big Data future

Making the Switch to Polarization Diversity — A new silicon-photonic chip from Japan’s AIST paves the way to truly integrated polarization-insensitive switches.

Optimizing Data Center Placement and Network Design to Strengthen Cloud Computing — Nokia-Bell Labs group has developed a mathematical model that offers improvements to the flow of internet traffic generated by cloud computing while optimizing data center placement.

The Golden Link: Plasmonic Device Offers Broadband Modulation to Optical Links at 100Gbit/s — A microscale modulator using plasmonically active gold components developed by ETH Zurich, demonstrates fast operation for ultra-broadband signals

Notable exhibits

With more than 340,000 square feet of exhibition space, OFC 2017 featured hundreds of exhibits from major international corporations including the likes of Adva, Ciena, Coriant, Corning, Cisco, Fujitsu Optical, Huawei, Juniper, Mitsubishi, and Nokia. Technologies on display include network and test equipment, optical transport systems and optical component, fiber cables and specialty fiber manufacturers.

Some of notable optical communications system and product launches and demonstrations at this year’s OFC included:

BRD Optical Co., LtdAUREA TECHNOLOGYNanoscribe GmbHDiffraction InternationalInfraTec GmbHSpectrum Scientific Inc. -  SSI OpticsSACHER LASERTECHNIK GMBH
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