Applications run in modern data centers--such as large-scale databases--show an ever-increasing need for communication between disparate processor and memory chips.
Provisioning for this communication using electronics increases system cost and design complexity. The communication itself burns power, consumes space, and degrades system response time. In the near future these penalties will grow to dominate the entire system's power and performance.
Optical solutions have found traction in metropolitan-wide-networks and in other large-scale deployments but have not yet been proven useful at the level of silicon chips mounted on boards: their high power consumption, large required space, and integration challenges have yet to be solved.
Oracle, through its Oracle Labs research arm, is investing in a partnership with DARPA to develop optical technologies so power-efficient and so space-efficient that they will revolutionize communications for silicon chips and chip packages. Oracle Labs is working closely with industry and academic partners to break through today's technology limits with manufacturable and low-cost solutions.
Half-way through a five and half-year research program, Oracle Labs has already set multiple world records in its multiwavelength silicon-based optical channel components. These include the lowest-power and highest-density optical transceivers and lowest-loss chip-to-chip optical couplers, all parts of a vision for a "macrochip," an optically-interconnected supercomputer.
This group, in Oracle Labs, has moved into Phase II of the UNIC program. Our charter is to develop energy-efficient advanced silicon photonic technologies for high-performance systems.
We have active efforts in the following broad areas. Please see our publications page for our papers.
Stanford University, Miller Group
UC San Diego, Fainman Group
UC San Diego, Buckwalter Group
UC Davis, Yoo Group
SMU, Evans Group
- System Integration