Vendors announce release of IBPAK multi-source agreement specification

March 4, 2004 Lisle, IL --Agilent Technologies Inc., Infineon Technologies, InfiniCon Systems, Mindspeed Technologies, Molex Inc., Optical Communication Products (OCP), Picolight Inc., Sun Microsystems Inc., Tyco Electronics, and W. L. Gore & Associates Inc. have announced the public release of the IBPAK multi-source agreement specification.

March 4, 2004 Lisle, IL --Agilent Technologies Inc., Infineon Technologies, InfiniCon Systems, Mindspeed Technologies, Molex Inc., Optical Communication Products (OCP), Picolight Inc., Sun Microsystems Inc., Tyco Electronics, and W. L. Gore & Associates Inc. have announced the public release of the IBPAK multi-source agreement (MSA) specification.

The MSA provides a common specification for hot-pluggable 4X copper transceivers and 4X/12X fiber-optic transceivers that support InfiniBand-defined ports. IBPAK enables multiple compatible sources of front-panel, hot-swap capable, 10-Gbit/sec (4 lane) and 30-Gbit/sec (12 lane) transceivers, including the electrical host connector and guide rail. The specification does not preclude12X copper transceiver solutions, which may be added later based on market activity.

The IBPAK specification incorporates the high-speed electrical, copper cable, and fiber attachment requirements defined in InfiniBand Architecture Specification Volume 2, Release 1.1, and adds the necessary definition for the electrical connector, package outline, guide rail, hot-swap (hot-pluggable), test, and control features to enable compatible and interchangeable solutions for 4X copper cable ports and 4X/12X fiber-optic ports. Transceivers based on this MSA are expected to function as transparent, re-timing repeaters, providing robust board-to-board and inter-chassis interconnections enabling fabric linking equipment within data centers among InfiniBand servers or between servers and storage equipment.

The IBPAK specification also identifies common product specifications for the host PCB layout; front panel requirements; EMI seal; electrical and management interfaces; and thermal, EMI, and ESD requirements. IBPAK transceivers are expected to provide signal conditioning, vendor and product information, status reports, and control via a serial interface.

Now that the details of the specification have been made available to the industry, other transceiver and component manufacturers can produce compatible products. IBPAK optical module companies expect to begin shipping these new transceivers next year. Guide rails and host board connectors are available for developers.

More information on the MSA and status and availability of the specification is available at www.IBPAK.org.

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