According to some brand new research in Australia, a new scientific breakthrough could make our internet 100 times faster than it is right now. And the entire research into this topic is relying on fiber optics that are imitating the most basic structure of all life on this planet: DNA.
Now, for anyone who’s not familiar with fiber optics, they are very long, very thin, and they are made out of pure glass. Putting them in bunches creates cables, also known as optical cables, where the fiber optics can transmit light pulses through them. However, if they are twisted up, according to the Australian RMIT University research, the light also twists into a spiral, which means that the speed of transmission can be increased tremendously. Right now, with the formation that scientists are currently using, the light pulses in the fiber optics are bouncing around down the glass, similar to the way light bounces off a mirror. But with this twist, a third dimension is born, which scientists are currently calling “the level of orbital angular momentum” and in physics is known as spin.
According to Min Gu, who’s a professor at the university and is also in charge of the research by having created the team that discovered the breakthrough, the entire formation is very similar to the double helix spiral of our own DNA. And another great thing about fiber optics is that they have the width of a human hair, compared to the other types of fibers, that are as big as dining tables, and practically impossible to twist in such a manner.
It’s thanks to companies such as Google and Microsoft that fiber optic cables are running all over the globe. And with this discovery, the entire internet would be effectively faster. However, there’s a big question on how much of that speed could our devices handle, which could end up limiting all of these practical benefits, at least until the rest of our hardware catches up to speed. But until then, even though these new fiber optics aren’t practical for everyday use in our homes, it would still be a useful upgrade elsewhere, such as Australia’s national broadband network.