Sicoya has developed a tiny silicon photonics modulator which it is using to design chip-to-chip optical interfaces. The German start-up believes such optical chips - what it calls application-specific photonic integrated circuits or ASPICs - will be needed in the data centre, first for servers and then switches and routers.
“The trend we are seeing is the optics moving very close to the processor,” says Sven Otte, Sicoya’s CEO.
Sicoya was founded last year and raised €3.5 million ($3.9 million) towards the end of 2015. Many of the company’s dozen staff previously worked at the Technical University of Berlin. Sicoya expects to grow the company’s staff to 20 by the year end.