28 Gbit/sec silicon photonics active optics aim for long reach at up to 400 Gbps

April 04, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Molex has introduced a line of QuatroScale active optic solutions designed for 100, 200 and 400 Gbps products, in response to demand for long reach, low power solutions supporting next generation 28 Gbps products and data centre applications,

“Average data centre interconnect stretches to over 130m in length but [they] still operate with 25 Gbps MM VCSEL solutions which have a target reach of only 100m,” notes Brent Hatfield, product manager for active optics, Molex. “Data centre architects and OEM providers are discovering that silicon photonics based optics bring significant advantages in terms of longer reach, with exceptionally low power consumption.”

QuatroScale solutions are based on silicon photonics CMOS technology, which achieves the longest reach and lowest bit error rate (BER), coupled with the highest reliability of any 28 Gbps product on the market. QuatroScale 100 Gbps zQSFP+ Active Optical Cable (AOC) and on-board module solutions run at 1.5W per 100 Gbps, but can go up to 4 km in distance. Low power QuatroScale AOCs deliver an achievable 1e-18 BER and over three billion device hours accumulated without an in-module failure. The compact form factor QuatroScale zCD AOCs deliver 16 bi-directional channels operating at 28 Gbps, with data rates scalable up to 400 Gbps bandwidth.

The QuatroScale portfolio is, Molex says, qualified to meet market demand for large and distributed HPC (High-Performance Computing) data centres. In summer 2014, Molex plans to begin offering samples of the following products based on its innovative silicon photonics optical platform:

100 Gbps QSFP28 AOCs

200 Gbps Mid-board Optical Modules (available in 200 Gbps or 2x 100 Gbps port products)

400 Gbps CDFP MSA AOCs

Molex; www.molex.com