Luxtera demos single-chip CMOS 40-Gbit/sec WDM technology

OCTOBER 17, 2006 -- Luxtera claims it is now the first photonics company to demonstrate the feasibility of applying Moore's Law to fiber bandwidth scalability implemented in a low-cost, commercial CMOS fabrication process.

OCTOBER 17, 2006 -- Luxtera Inc. (search Luxtera) today announced a new technology that multiplexes four 10-Gbit/sec wavelengths onto a single fiber on a production CMOS die--resulting in a single fiber 40-Gbit/sec link. This advance reduces cost for high-bandwidth interconnect over traditional parallel fiber solutions and paves the technological way for next-generation 100-Gbit/sec Ethernet data center connectivity, say company representatives.

Luxtera recently announced sampling of its single wavelength 10-Gbit/sec silicon photonics transceiver technology, implemented in standard SOI CMOS process with integrated Indium Phosphate laser light sources. By combining that technology with WDM capability, Luxtera claims it is now the first photonics company to demonstrate the feasibility of applying Moore's Law to fiber bandwidth scalability implemented in a low-cost, commercial CMOS fabrication process.

"This announcement is one in a series of 'firsts' for us at Luxtera," contends company co-founder and CTO Cary Gunn. "Just last month we announced that we are the first to sample monolithic devices containing combined lasers and CMOS photonic circuits in a commercially feasible transceiver configuration," he notes. "With these announcements, we continue to strive to bring new technologies to market quickly while transforming the photonics industry as we know it today."

The 40-Gbit/sec WDM technology development was partially funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) as part of the Electronic and Photonic Integrated Circuits (EPIC) Phase One program. Successful completion of this phase paves the way for Luxtera to secure additional funding for subsequent EPIC program phases with the ultimate goal of delivering commercial-quality, high-bandwidth transceiver technology.

According to Luxtera, its new technology integrates high-performance photonics and mainstream electronics on a single die, which--along with integrated lasers--brings fiber connectivity directly to the chip. Because Luxtera's products are developed in a standard CMOS fabrication process, additional digital logic can be integrated into the same chip along with optical devices, further reducing overall solution size, power consumption, and cost. Luxtera says it is currently sampling prototypes to development partners, and the company will launch a commercial transceiver product line based on this underlying technology in 2007--years ahead of the competition, claim Luxtera representatives. Future applications will extend to chip-to-chip and intra-chip optical connectivity.


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