NEC Corp. in Tokyo has developed an integrated circuit (IC) that can amplify electronic signals at a rate of 40 Gbits/sec. Conventional amplifier ICs can only handle data flow rates of approximately 30 Gbits/sec. The company plans to develop the chip for use in the optical-fiber trunk lines of telephone and cable-TV systems. The chip converts optical signals into electronic signals and then boosts the voltage. For instance, it can boost 0.1- to 5-mA signals to 10 to 500 mV.