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Aug 24th, 2010
New EU project to cut power consumption of telecoms networks
A consortium spanning Europe hopes to significantly reduce the power consumption of telecommunications and data networks.
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Five partner organizations have co joined the BIANCHO project (BIsmide And Nitride Components for High temperature Operation), a three year research and development initiative with funding of €2.190 m through the EU Framework 7 program. The project's goal is to develop new semiconductor materials to allow lasers and other photonic components to become more energy efficient and also more tolerant of high operating temperatures. These telecommunications and data networks are estimated to consume up to 3 percent of European electricity.

Intrinsic losses from components turns to heat. Heat requires power hungry cooling. This happens due to a process known as Auger recombination, and it is a consequence of the band structure of the semiconductor materials used in making components such as semiconductor lasers and optical amplifiers. BIANCHO proposes to eliminate Auger recombination by making components with novel dilute bismide and dilute nitride alloys of Gallium Arsenide and Indium Phosphide.

The project will be coordinated by the Tyndall National Institute (Ireland), internationally recognised for its strength in semiconductor band structure modelling. The other academic partners are Philipps Universitaet Marburg (Germany) focussing on material growth and characterisation; Semiconductor Research Institute (Lithuania) responsible for the design, manufacture and characterisation of bismide-based epitaxial structures; the University of Surrey (UK) who contribute unique characterisation facilities and modelling expertise. CIP Technologies will be in charge of the commercialization.


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