The use of optical interconnects has burgeoned as a promising technology that can address the limits of data transfer for future high-performance silicon chips. Recent pushes to enhance optical communication have focused on developing wavelength-division multiplexing technology, and new dimensions of data transfer will be paramount to fulfill the ever-growing need for speed. Here we demonstrate an integrated multi-dimensional communication scheme that combines wavelength- and mode- multiplexing on a silicon photonic circuit. Using foundry-compatible photonic inverse design and spectrally flattened microcombs, we demonstrate a 1.12-Tb/s natively error-free data transmission throughout a silicon nanophotonic waveguide. Furthermore, we implement inverse-designed surface-normal couplers to enable multimode optical transmission between separate silicon chips throughout a multimode-matched fibre. All the inverse-designed devices comply with the process design rules for standard silicon photonic foundries. Our approach is inherently scalable to a multiplicative enhancement over the state of the art silicon photonic transmitters.
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