Energy / Climate Change

July 29, 2007


Low-Power Superconducting Network Device Test a Success

Keywords: Energy Conservation Environmental Technology Government University / Research institute 

Japan's New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) announced on March 19, 2007 that it conducted an operational test of a local area network (LAN) system using a superconducting device and for the first time in the world succeeded in transmitting images among a number of personal computers. The test verified the feasibility of this high-capacity, ultra-low power consumption router equipped with a superconducting switch. This technology is expected to lower the now significantly growing power consumption of our increasingly information-based society.

The advance of the information-based society requires faster processing of greater volumes of information, and to meet this demand, higher-speed large-scale integration (LSI) has become necessary. However, the performance of semiconducting LSI systems will soon reach its limit, and therefore development of new technology is needed, such as higher-speed networking routers and other devices that consume less power. Superconducting technology offers potential because superconducting devices can operate at 100 times higher speed while using a thousand times less power than semiconducting LSI devices.

The newly developed system is easily handled as it can be connected to room temperature devices with ordinary connectors - just by pressing the system's cooling button it can generate the extremely low temperature needed for superconducting circuits. The verification test confirmed that the superconducting switch allows high speed digital signals to be switched at 10 Giga bits per second (Gbps) with a practical error rate of 10-13 bps or less. It also proved that this switch works correctly even at a signal rate of 40 Gbps.

Posted: 2007/07/29 10:33:18 AM
Japanese version