Bell Labs Plugs in to the Network
NEW YORK – Following a lull in the 1980s and early 1990s, and a shift toward business-driven research, “Bell Labs feels like it’s back on track,” President Marcus Weldon told EE Times from his Murray Hill, New Jersey office.
The multi-Nobel Prize winning research institute has kicked networking research into high gear under Alcatel-Lucent and is about to get a boost from a mega-merger with Nokia Networks.
Bell Labs’ physicists, chemists and engineers should “think freely about problems that people think are too complex to solve,” Weldon said. Many of those problems will arise over the next 10 years in the areas of wireless and networking infrastructure thanks to a lack of spectrum and an ever-increasing number of connections. As a result, the network will be the next big thing in innovation, Weldon said.
Last year, the labs announced its researchers sent data at 10 Gbits/second over existing copper wires. The XG-Fast project was the first major success in a 13-project series that aims to solve networking problems ten years out.