The technology we use everyday empowers us and allows us to improve the quality of our lives. Although the technology we rely on in our daily lives is not devoid of problems, its positive impact should be recognized.
For instance, modern world's data communication technology has connected each corner of the world to the other, making communication among distant places a cakewalk, allowing millions of users access to a vast amount of information on the Internet.
Light is a form of electromagnetic radiation. Terahertz radiation is, in a basic level, invisible light that has a longer wavelength than that of visible light. It operates in the range of 100GHz to 10,000GHz.
Using Terahertz Radiation for Data Transmission Applications
The research team's device consists of a combination of organic and inorganic materials. The base structure is made up of a silicon substrate.
As data transmission speeds increase, the increasing strain is placed on the electrical conductors used in traditional data transmission systems.
Multiple layers of a hybrid material known as a 'Perovskites' are then applied on top of the silicon substrate.
As Vardeny puts it, the perovskite material is made up of inorganic material, as well as of organic material. The dual nature of the perovskites allows it to be easily deposited onto a silicon substrate while it's still possesses desirable optical properties.
With this setup, the layered device essentially acts as a receiver to the Terahertz signals. This data is encoded using a halogen lamp. The different layers of perovskite allow a control over the Terahertz signal, based on the color of the light used for encoding.
One of the breakthroughs was a simple halogen lamp that was used to encode the signal. Previously, this type of work made the use of high-power, expensive lasers. Use of such affordable halogen lamps makes Nahata and Vardeny's system way simpler and much less expensive.
In general, using light instead of electricity to control data results in a faster and simpler communication system. As data transmission speeds increase, the increasing strain is being placed on the electrical conductors that are used in traditional data transmission systems. This is where systems like the Terahertz receiver come into play.
The researchers admit that it will be another 10 years before this technology is available commercially. That's alright however. We aren't quite at the limit of the current data transmission system yet.
This doesn't mean that we should rest on our laurels. Inventions like these need to be completed beforehand so that we can switch to a faster more efficient means of data transmission when the time comes.