Massively Parallel Amplitude-Only Fourier Neural Network

16 Aug 2020  ·  Miscuglio Mario, Hu Zibo, Li Shurui, George Jonathan, Capanna Roberto, Bardet Philippe M., Gupta Puneet, Sorger Volker J. ·

Machine-intelligence has become a driving factor in modern society. However, its demand outpaces the underlying electronic technology due to limitations given by fundamental physics such as capacitive charging of wires, but also by system architecture of storing and handling data, both driving recent trends towards processor heterogeneity... Here we introduce a novel amplitude-only Fourier-optical processor paradigm capable of processing large-scale ~(1,000 x 1,000) matrices in a single time-step and 100 microsecond-short latency. Conceptually, the information-flow direction is orthogonal to the two-dimensional programmable-network, which leverages 10^6-parallel channels of display technology, and enables a prototype demonstration performing convolutions as pixel-wise multiplications in the Fourier domain reaching peta operations per second throughputs. The required real-to-Fourier domain transformations are performed passively by optical lenses at zero-static power. We exemplary realize a convolutional neural network (CNN) performing classification tasks on 2-Megapixel large matrices at 10 kHz rates, which latency-outperforms current GPU and phase-based display technology by one and two orders of magnitude, respectively. Training this optical convolutional layer on image classification tasks and utilizing it in a hybrid optical-electronic CNN, shows classification accuracy of 98% (MNIST) and 54% (CIFAR-10). Interestingly, the amplitude-only CNN is inherently robust against coherence noise in contrast to phase-based paradigms and features an over 2 orders of magnitude lower delay than liquid crystal-based systems. Beyond contributing to novel accelerator technology, scientifically this amplitude-only massively-parallel optical compute-paradigm can be far-reaching as it de-validates the assumption that phase-information outweighs amplitude in optical processors for machine-intelligence. read more

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