PORTLAND, Ore. IBM Corp. is claiming its silicon-germainum chip technology earns top honors in both bits-per-second and clock-frequency metrics.
The announcement is expected Tuesday (Feb.17) at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco.
Silicon bests indium phosphide, according to IBM, and its proof is an experimental multiplexor communicating at speeds of up to 132 Gbits/s. The company will also report on a 60-GHz silicon-germanium transceiver for wireless networks.
"We don't have a demultiplexor yet, but out multiplexor has a lot of transistors, a whole clock tree and we've figured out how to get all these latches to work in silicon [germanium]," said IBM's manager of communications technologies, Modest Oprysko.
IBM's message, according to Oprysko, is that silicon germanium can handle the next generation of both wired and wireless
communications namely, 100 Gbit/s wired Ethernet and 1-Gbit wireless networks respectively.
"We don't think you have to go to exotic materials for these
applications, there is a silicon solution available," said Oprysko."The key is that we are pushing the envelope with silicon, both in terms of bits per second and in frequency."
IBM's 108 Gbits/s is now running in the lab at 132 Gbits/s multiplexer that could be used in such a future 100-Gbit/s Ethernet application. It will also show its wireless transceiver
that pushes the envelope in terms of frequency wireless
communications in the ultra-high 60 GHz band.
"We are now getting frequencies in the 60 GHz range, which is the millimeter-wave band. People have been thinking about this in silicon before, but never have been able to realize it."