OIF mulls 100G technology

October 27, 2005 Milpitas, CA -- According to a press release, during a meeting of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) to review technical specifications for emerging technology, Joel Goergen, chief scientist and vice president of technology at Force10 Networks, suggested that tight integration and careful design methodology at the system level are the fundamental requirements for ensuring high performance at 100 Gbit/sec transmission speeds.

October 27, 2005 Milpitas, CA -- According to a press release, during a meeting of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) to review technical specifications for emerging technology, Joel Goergen, chief scientist and vice president of technology at Force10 Networks, suggested that tight integration and careful design methodology at the system level are the fundamental requirements for ensuring high performance at 100 Gbit/sec transmission speeds.

"Defined system design requirements and integration will be crucial to the success and reliability of 100-Gig technology, and an essential component will be a high capacity backplane that does not act as an impediment to traffic from the interfaces," said Goergen. "A fundamentally new way of designing backplanes and having a 25-Gbit/sec SERDES (serializer/deserializer) developed within the OIF will be the 100-Gig enablers the industry requires to move the technology forward."

While the 10-Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) market is still in its early stages of growth, with certain projections estimating that it will more than double in 2006 to $1.8 billion, research organizations and national laboratories are already anticipating the need for 100-GbE capacity, with design specifications for 100-GbE expected to enable higher system-level Gigabit and 10-GbE densities. With a lengthy process required for standardizing new technology, Goergen contends that the industry needs to immediately begin exploring the mechanics behind implementing 100-GbE technology, in order to ensure availability coincides with early adopter demand.

"It took the industry over five years to develop and standardize 10-GbE, and several more years for organizations to adopt it," observes Goergen, who was one of several contributors to the 10-GbE standard. "By examining the architectural issues involved in delivering 100-GbE today, the industry will be better equipped to design the scalable systems that can accommodate the move to the next iteration of Ethernet technology."

Force10 Networks notes that its TeraScale E-Series platform's core architecture is designed to accommodate the transition from 10-GbE to 40- or 100-GbE. According to the company, with a 5-Tbit/sec backplane and the ability so support nearly 360-Gbit/sec per chassis slot, the platform provides long-term investment protection and a foundation for next-generation 100-GbE networks.

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