Wireless sub-THz communication system with high data rate
In communications, the frequency range 0.1-30 THz is essentially terra incognita. Recently, research has focused on this terahertz gap, because the high carrier frequencies promise unprecedented channel capacities. Indeed, data rates of 100 Gbit s(-1) were predicted for 2015. Here, we present, for the first time, a single-input and single-output wireless communication system at 237.5 GHz for transmitting data over 20 m at a data rate of 100 Gbit s(-1). This breakthrough results from combining terahertz photonics and electronics, whereby a narrow-band terahertz carrier is photonically generated by mixing comb lines of a mode-locked laser in a uni-travellingcarrier photodiode. The uni-travelling-carrier photodiode output is then radiated over a beam-focusing antenna. The signal is received by a millimetre-wave monolithic integrated circuit comprising novel terahertz mixers and amplifiers. We believe that this approach provides a path to scale wireless communications to Tbit s(-1) rates over distances of >1 km.