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Optalysys Receives $350K DARPA Grant for Optical Computing

Photonics.com
Apr 2016
CAMBRIDGE, England, April 27, 2016 — Optalysys Ltd. said it has been awarded a $350,000 grant from DARPA to advance and apply optical co-processing technology for the solving of complex mathematical equations relevant to large-scale scientific and engineering simulations, such as weather prediction and aerodynamics.

Optalysys’ technology uses light rather than electricity to perform intensive mathematical calculations, and the company aims to provide existing computer systems with boosted processing capabilities, with the goal of reaching exaflop rates (a billion billion calculations per second). The company described its technology as built on principles of Fourier and diffractive optics and used in combination with advanced microdisplays.

The project’s goal is to lay the groundwork for producing optical processing systems capable of high-end tasks used in computational fluid dynamic simulation models such as direct numerical simulation and large eddy simulation.

The technology is currently developed to Technology Readiness Level 5 and is being developed for use primarily in the field of genetic sequencing as part of a U.K. government-funded project in collaboration with The Genome Analysis Centre in Norwich, England.


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