1 December 2010

Professor Ben Eggleton, Director of CUDOS, an Australia Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence, headquartered at the University of Sydney's School of Physics, said he was thrilled with the announcement that the University of Sydney was the recipient of an ARC Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment, and Facilities Grant. "This grant will enable us to assemble a leading-edge optical communication facility for testing the building blocks in next generation optical fiber networks", he said.

"Five years ago when I spoke about optical applications such as e-health people rolled their eyes but with the capabilities provided by the NBN, people now know it's a reality," he explained. "Our facility is a cornerstone piece of national infrastructure to support on-going research in this area".

Eggleton says the support of the ARC is an investment in Australia's technological future enabling Australian researchers in industry and academia to develop and test revolutionary optical signal processors operating at data rates unimaginable a few years ago. "That's one of the principal missions of our new Centre of Excellence, and this facility will provide the infrastructure to validate our work."

Eggleton says that with the new facility, CUDOS researchers will have access to ultrahigh bit rate (terabit per second) signals encoded with more spectrally efficient data modulations formats. "This will give us a more energy efficient and broader bandwidth Internet. Not only will you be able to move data around faster, but with less energy consumed."

The ARC Grant will help support CUDOS and collaborating organisations and enhance its interactions with industry leaders such as Finisar.

Terabit per second corresponds to 1000 Gigabits per second or 1 million Megabits per second. This corresponds roughly to the internet traffic that will be in the core of the next generation network. The so-called Terabit per second grand challenge project aims to develop photonic signal processing that will enable energy efficient processing in these next generation networks.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for cutting edge research to be fully developed within Australia," says Eggleton adding, "We're training and preparing the future drivers of the NBN."

CUDOS, an ARC Centre of Excellence was funded in 2003 and recently was awarded funds for another seven years. CUDOS is headquartered at the University of Sydney with collaborating organizations, ANU, Macquarie University, UTS, RMIT University, Monash University and Swinburne University.

This LIEF grant is a collaboration between Sydney University, ANU, Macquarie University, RMIT University, Monash University, Edith Cowan University and industry partner Finisar Australia.

Contact: Alison Muir

Phone: 02 9036 5194

Email: 112a0418285b192404250673361333373c4d492807397b5901