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Future Computing and Communication

Grand Challenge - 100× energy efficiency increase for same performance, or 100× more performance for same energy

The internet, data centre traffic, and computing capacity grow exponentially, driven by new developments like Big Data, The Cloud and the Internet of Things. Already, these technologies consume between 3% and 10% of the total electrical power generated. Without radically new technologies, this growth would double our global carbon footprint in 8-10 years.

AU is developing new technologies for computing and communications that aim to increase the efficiency hundredfold. These technologies will be the key enabling technologies beyond 2025.



  • „The Horizon 2020 FET-open project SPICE is developing a CMOS-compatible platform for the integration of electronics, spintronics and photonics. By switching magnetic memory elements by optical pulses, the memory energy-efficiency is increased 100×, for future petabit-per-second processor-memory bandwidths. 
  • „The mmW-SPRAWL project develops millimeter-wave transmitters, based on silicon photonic integrated circuits, for future 5G networks, operating in the 60-GHz band and up, and targeting wireless bandwidths of 100 Gbps.
  • „The micro-NIST project is developing ultra-low noise oscillators in the gigahertz range, based on photonic integrated circuits. The low timing jitter in the gigahertz regime enables energy-efficient signal processing at 50 GHz and up, for terabit ethernet and coherent radar. Read more