High-performance computing and telecommunication network systems often rely on more energy-efficient data solutions and higher-bandwidth to put up with the rising data traffic. In the past few years, high-performance computing offered structured, precise, and seismic exploration in all its applications. However, advances in such high-performance computing systems are often bottle-necked with the communications and energy expenses while interconnecting multifarious resources. The design and integration of silicon photonics provide embedded optical connectivity, reduces energy consumption and computation time in the high-performance systems.

On the other hand, telecommunication networks are growing expeditiously over the past few years due to the outburst of communication technologies such as mobile networks, social media, 4G and the internet. Besides, the demand to build these networks with efficient processing ability, increased flexibility, and bandwidth density. Owing to the rapid increase of the telecommunication networks, silicon photonics is considered as the most viable option for the interconnection between routers, data centers, switches, and radio base stations, etc. Owing to all these applications in the high-performance computing systems and telecommunication networks, the global Silicon Photonics in High Performance Computing and Telecommunications Market size attained a value of $200 million in 2018. Furthermore, the demand for this market is poised to accelerate with a CAGR of 36.9% during 2019-2025.

The Prominence of Research Activities in Silicon Photonic Lasers Pertaining To Energy Consumption

In the digital era, there is a huge demand influx to address ever-growing data traffic. Fiber-optic cables are able to handle this data transfer emerging all around the globe. However, when the signal arrives at the local data center, it is trapped in the bottleneck of silicon-based chips. In order to handle this demand, silicon photonics is embedded with quantum-dot lasers. These lasers save increasing energy consumption and are more stable with the silicon photonic circuits.

Researches are seemingly increasing in this silicon-photonic lasers. Recently, a research supported by the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), specified that the testing is conducted on lasers that can operate at 60 to 80 degrees Celsius. These temperatures indicate the typical temperature range of a data center or supercomputer used for high performance computing purposes in the telecom. Research activities as such are flourishing in the silicon photonics industry for the applications of telecommunications and HPC market.

Americas to Be Most Lucrative In the Global Silicon Photonics Market in High Performance Computing and Telecommunications

Americas is the dominating region in the global silicon photonics in high performance computing and telecommunications market. The region held a share of about 37.6% in this industry. According to the International Energy Statistics, Americas together consume about 146.351 Quadrillion BTU of energy in 2016 which occupied about 25% share of the global energy consumption. Owing to the huge energy consumption of the region, the research activities and investments to reduce energy consumption are rising.

On the other hand, high performance computing systems that are a combination of processing capability and storage capacity to unravel the computational challenges of different business needs is growing in the countries such as the United States, Canada. Perhaps, the U.S is a global leader in the high performance computing owing to the research and investments supported by its government. Besides, these activities are observed in the silicon photonics market to expedite the scientific and business operations of the high performance computing systems. As a result, the silicon photonics in high performance computing and telecommunications market demand is thriving in the Americas.

Telecommunications Surging With the Advances in the Silicon Photonics Market

The telecommunications market is disrupting with the advances in the silicon photonics technology owing to its eminent advantage as the communication medium. As per the statistics of the International Telecommunications Union, about 51.2% of the global population, i.e. 3.9 billion people were using the internet by the end of 2018. The immense internet penetration around the world is contributing to silicon photonics market demand. Subsequently, the silicon photonics market in the telecommunications sector is accelerating with a CAGR of 33.8% during the forecast period. Furthermore, the outsourcing capabilities of the communication networks and technologies are reinforcing the competition in delivering value-added services and the superior customer experience in the market. The demand for these services that rely on the infrastructure components such as data centers, servers, routers, operations support systems, and network devices which use silicon photonics is in turn growing. Silicon photonics deliver data transfer is with high-speed processing abilities using low-power devices. As a result, the power consumption of the infrastructure is plummeting. Therefore, the silicon photonics in telecommunications market is experiencing intense growth in the forecast period.

Silicon Photonics in HPC and Telecommunications Market Growth Drivers and Trends

Energy-Consumption Driving the Innovations in Silicon Photonics of HPC Systems

According to the Energy Information Administration, global energy consumption has risen from 565.051 Quadrillion BTU in 2013 to 579.544 Quadrillion BTU in 2016. Intensifying energy consumption has become a salient area of development for nations around the world. In this context, energy consumption has also become a vital aspect in employing the design process of the high performance systems. Moreover, energy-efficiency in the high performance computing system is driven by huge costs. Optical solutions offered by silicon photonics are an obvious way to mitigate energy-costs, bandwidth density and latency. Furthermore, innovations and research activities to lessen the energy consumption of the HPC systems in silicon photonics are taking a paramount path, thereby becoming a dynamic contributor to the growth of silicon photonics in the high performance computing market.  

Silicon Photonics for High Performance Computing Commercial Applications

For the past few years, silicon photonics using optical technology is constantly improvising and finding its applications in the high performance computing systems. For instance, silicon photonics transceivers are connecting racks optically in data centers using high data rates over 100Gbps.

Companies such as Intel and Luxtera are delivering commercial products which use these silicon photonics transceivers. Moreover, intrinsic service offered by silicon photonics in terms of mass manufacturing ability and scalability is making it cutting-edge over the other technologies such as InP based modules and others.  As a result, silicon photonics is surging in the high performance computers and optical sensors market.

Key Players in the Silicon Photonics in HPC and Telecommunications Market

The foremost players in the global silicon photonics in high performance computing and telecommunications market are Acacia Communications, Cisco Systems, Inc., Luxtera Inc., Intel Corporation, Globalfoundries, Hamamatsu, Juniper Networks, Inc., Mellanox Technologies Ltd., and Finisar Corporation. The key players’ global presence and penetration in offering outreach services are the essential metrics augmenting their position in the global marketplace.

Few of the updates pertaining to silicon photonics in high performance computing and telecommunications industry include:

Design Prototype launch – In 2018, Leti proposed a silicon photonic network on-chip prototype which uses robust WDM optical links in order to converge next-generation data processing requirements of high performance computing applications. This demonstrates the high-density integration of optical communication channels in silicon photonics to address the higher bandwidth demands at lower latencies of HPC applications.

Research Activity – A recent research conducted by the Cardiff University of the United Kingdom, shows that miniature light-emitting nanolasers which are less than one-tenth of the size of the width of a human hair can be incorporated into silicon chip design. Silicon is the most prevalent material for the semiconductor industry. Through this research, the university finds opportunities to integrate extremely small lasers for compact light sources that are applicable to silicon-based electronics and photonics platforms. These kinds of research activities are gaining huge traction in the telecommunication networks where suitable light sources have the scope to transform the entire market.

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