A high-speed optical multi-drop bus for computer interconnections

Michael Tan, Paul Rosenberg, Jong Souk Yeo, Moray McLaren, Sagi Mathai, Terry Morris, Huei Pei Kuo, Joseph Straznicky, Norman P. Jouppi, Shih Yuan Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Buses have historically provided a flexible communications structure in computer systems. However, signal integrity constraints of high-speed electronics have made multi-drop electrical buses infeasible. Instead, we propose an optical data bus for computer interconnections. It has two sets of optical waveguides, one as a fan-out and the other as a fan-in, that are used to interconnect different modules attached to the bus. A master module transmits optical signals which are received by all the slave modules attached to the bus. Each slave module in turn sends data back on the bus to the master module. Arrays of lasers, photodetectors, waveguides, microlenses, beamsplitters, and Tx/Rx integrated circuits are used to realize the optical data bus. With 1 mW of laser power, we are able to interconnect eight different modules at 10 Gb/s per channel. An aggregate bandwidth of over 25 GB/s is achievable with 10-bit wide signaling paths.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)945-953
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Physics A: Materials Science and Processing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jun

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)


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