Ergin Dinc and colleagues at the U.K.'s University of Cambridge claim copper telephone wire already deployed across Britain can carry data at rates three times higher than fiber-optic cable at much less cost, over short distances.
The researchers say twisted pairs of copper wire can bear a frequency five times higher than is currently employed, which may enable houses near fiber-optic cables to realize higher speeds than currently possible, without threading fiber all the way to their homes.
In addition, the researchers learned that copper broadband connections' operating frequency of less than 1 gigahertz can theoretically be increased to 5 gigahertz through the use of an electrical device called a balun.
From New Scientist
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