HP is working on a project codenamed "Carona" that focuses on using fiber optic-like technology to address some problems that data centers and supercomputers are facing in terms of scalability and power consumption. Advancements and implementation of this technology could effectively make "electronics" so last MacWorld.
Corona will be a 265 core computer chip manufactured with a 16nm form factor that uses beams of light to connect the cores together. The cores in the chip will be arranged in 64 core clusters and be able to operate at 10 trillion operations per second, allowing the cores to communicate with each other at 20 terabytes per second! The cores would also be able to communicate with external memory at 10 terabytes per second... that's insane. Put 5 of these chips together and you're in the same league with modern supercomputers in terms of computing power. "Integrated photonics" is the key to making Corona a reality by 2017 and it focuses on using a similar technology that exists in telecommunication networks but this has to be adapted for core-to-core communication. This technology is not a reality yet but with chip manufactures shrinking optical communication devices to fit onto chips, the reality is getting closer. According to HP Lab's researcher Marco Fiorentino,
A lot of people have concentrated on individual devices. Now they're starting to build circuits. It's like going from the transistor to the integrated circuit.
Corona would be incredibly fast but how will it help increase scalability and reduce power consumption which are equally important? Read on after the break to find out.