First programmable optical digital signal processor

Lenslet's EnLight Optical Processor combines optics, silicon, communication interfaces, and development tools in a standard electronic board format. EnLight 64 delivers 240 Giga MAC ops/sec. It's said to be the first programmable optical processor. Enlight 256, under development, reportedly boosts standard DSP performance by three orders of magnitude, and said to achieve 1,000x faster operation.
By Staff January 1, 2005

Lenslet’s EnLight Optical Processor combines optics, silicon, communication interfaces, and development tools in a standard electronic board format. EnLight 64 delivers 240 Giga MAC ops/sec. It’s said to be the first programmable optical processor. Enlight 256, under development, reportedly boosts standard DSP performance by three orders of magnitude, and said to achieve 1,000x faster operation. Israel-based Lenslet Ltd. says the EnLight256 carries a specification of up to 8-Tera (1,012) multiply-accumulate (MAC) operations per second, or 8,000 GMAC/s.

In addition, EnLight256 is a general-purpose, fixed-point ODSP with an embedded optical core. It consists of three elements: vector matrix multiplier (VMM) that performs its ultra-fast vector-matrix operations; vector processor unit (VPU) that handles 128 Giga operations per second; and standard DSP (TI’s TMS320C64xx) for control and scalar processing.

Also, software for EnLight is developed using three main tools: Matlab APL bit exact simulator, APL Studio bit exact and cycle exact simulator, and APL Studio Emulator. These tools ensure a smooth development path starting from the floating-point algorithm to running and debugging code.

Lenslet adds that EnLight targets computationally intense applications, such as video compression, video encoders, security (baggage scanning and multi-sensor threat analysis), and defense and communication systems. It can be applied either as a system-embedded accelerator or a standalone processor. Potential benefits of the optical processor include enhanced communications in noisy channels, multi-channel interference cancellation, and replacement of existing multi-DSP boards. www.lenslet.com

  • First programmable optical processor

  • Combines optics, silicon, communications, and tools in standard board

  • Specified at up to 8 Tera (1,012) multiply-accumulate (MAC) operations per second

  • Software tools allow smooth development path

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