Silicon and software for IEEE 1588 meets network synchronisation standards

November 02, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Clock hardware and IEEE 1588 protocol stack software make packet-based synchronisation simpler to deploy, with IDT’s 82P339xx-1 that comprises IEEE 1588-compliant software and synchronisation management unit (SMU) ICs that deliver a complete telecom network synchronisation solution for IEEE 1588 and synchronous Ethernet.

Network synchronisation based on IEEE 1588 Telecom Boundary Clocks (T-BC) is a practical and cost-effective alternative to deploying Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) antennas at every node in the network. IEEE 1588 Telecom Boundary Clocks compliant with ITU-T G.8273.2 enable the recovery of accurate frequency and phase/time information over a packet-based network.

The IDT T-BC hardware is claimed to be deterministic, simpler and more automated than alternative silicon solutions as it requires less external processor intervention. The hardware/software solution includes an IEEE 1588 protocol stack, clock recovery servos for frequency and phase/time, and clock synthesis hardware with physical layer frequency support.

“Packet-based synchronisation has historically been challenging for system designers to implement because it requires a broad range of specialised technology and needs to meet stringent network standards,” said Louise Gaulin, vice president and general manager of IDT’s Network Communications Division. “The 82P339xx-1 products were engineered to be easy to use, flexible and to comply with the latest generation of packet-based synchronisation standards.”

The 82P339xx-1 SMUs automatically filter IEEE 1588 phase/time information and combine it with physical layer frequency information in accordance with ITU-T G.8273.2 to generate accurate, stable and low-jitter clocks. The phase/time and frequency filters are implemented in hardware to ensure deterministic filter bandwidths, eliminating the need for additional software processing.

The 82P339xx-1 product family is designed for applications including base stations, access equipment, routers, switches, optical equipment and servers. Standards compliance has been validated and test reports are available with the results.