• Technical Conference:  05 – 09 March 2023
  • Exhibition: 07 – 09 March 2023
  • San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, California, USA

Time to Face the Cost Per Bit “Crunch”: Trends and Expectations for the Next Decade

Sunday, 06 March 13:00 – 15:30


Amirhossein Ghazisaeidi, Nokia Bell Labs, France
Taiji Sakamoto, NTT Access Service Systems Laboratories, Japan
Chester Shu, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Oleg Sinkin, TE SubCom, USA


Cost per bit has experienced exponential decrease with time historically. This trend is expected to continue as future capacity demand continues to grow.  Many current technologies are mature and are close to fundamental limits: Improvements in modulation formats, FEC, improvements in fiber loss and nonlinearity are expected to be relatively minor and cannot accommodate increasing capacity demand. There are research studies on space division multiplexing (SDM) and bandwidth extension; however, there is no clear path to addressing capacity and economic challenges ahead. 

The SDM transmission has been on the spotlight of optical communications for the past ten years already, and extensive research efforts on SDM fiber technologies, amplifiers, and other components have clearly shown the great potential of this approach to scale the capacity of optical systems. At the same time, the ever-increasing capacity requirements in almost every application space are bringing SDM closer to deployment, but that bridge has not yet been crossed.

We will ask:

  • Why hasn't SDM been commercialized after more than a decade of research?
  • Where are the bottlenecks of the SDM technology?
  • What prevents the industry from starting the shift from single-mode to multi-mode technology?
  • Which will be the first application? Data centers? Terrestrial? Submarine?
  • What are the limits of the current multiple single-mode fibers per cable?

Enlarging the transmission bandwidth in the wavelength domain is a proven and mature technology that has been widely adopted by system developers. A natural question asked is how far can we practically go beyond the C+L band?  Recent progress in wideband optical frequency comb source, high-speed modulators, low-loss hollow-core transmission fibers, wide-band fiber amplifiers, semiconductor optical amplifiers, and other active and passive devices may shed light towards realization of new transmission windows, but at what cost? 

The workshop will attempt to stimulate the discussion on potential cost-effective solutions to future capacity scaling, emphasizing techno-economic analysis in the horizon of next 5 to 10 years. Our goal is to focus on the current bottlenecks for cost/bit reduction and potential solutions, and the time-line of the proposed solution. We will kindly ask all our invited speakers to finish their presentations with a vision/trend takeaway slide to help having focused and useful panel discussions.  


Brandon Collings, Lumentum, USA
Oliver Courtois, Nokia Bell Labs, USA
John Downie, Corning, USA
Jozeph Kahn, Stanford University, USA
Yutaka Miyamoto, NTT, Japan
Massimiliano Salsi, Google, USA
Lynn Nelson, AT&T, USA
Stefan Voll, Infinera, USA