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Proceedings Paper

Comparison of optics and electronics for the calculation of matrix-vector products
Author(s): Charles K. Gary
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Paper Abstract

Optical processors are attractive because of their ability to perform massively parallel operations such as matrix vector products. The inherently analog nature of optical calculations requires that optical processors be based on analog computations. While the speed at which such analog operations can be performed as well as the natural parallelism of optical systems are great advantages of optical processors, the analog representation of values severely limits the achievable accuracy. Furthermore, optical processors are limited by the need to convert information to and from the intensity of light. Digitization can be used to increase the accuracy of optical matrix-vector processors, but causes a severe reduction in speed. This paper compares the throughput and power requirements of optical and electronic processors, showing that optical matrix-vector processors can provide a greater number of operations/Watt than conventional electronics.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 August 1992
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 1704, Advances in Optical Information Processing V, (24 August 1992); doi: 10.1117/12.139926
Show Author Affiliations
Charles K. Gary, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1704:
Advances in Optical Information Processing V
Dennis R. Pape, Editor(s)

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