ClariPhy, Sumitomo Electric pair to demo 100G coherent CFP technology

March 13, 2013
Communications system-on-chip (SoC) developer ClariPhy Communications, Inc. and optical component and subsystems vendor Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. will partner at OFC/NFOEC next week in Anaheim to demonstrate what they assert is the first 100-Gbps coherent CFP technology platform. The platform combines ClariPhy’s new analog-to-digital converter (ADC) and digital-to-analog converter (DAC) made in 28-nm CMOS with Sumitomo Electric’s indium phosphide (InP) based integrated coherent optical engine.

Communications system-on-chip (SoC) developer ClariPhy Communications, Inc. and components and subsystems vendor Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. will partner at OFC/NFOEC next week in Anaheim to demonstrate what they assert is the first 100-Gbps coherent CFP technology platform. The platform combines ClariPhy’s new analog-to-digital converter (ADC) and digital-to-analog converter (DAC) made in 28-nm CMOS with Sumitomo Electric’s indium phosphide (InP) based integrated coherent optical engine.

The demonstration will show off the platform’s capabilities to work with both QPSK and 16QAM modulation. The technologies will support the 32-W power budget for the CFP optical transceiver, as well as set the stage for CFP2 modules down the road, Dr. Paul Voois, co-founder and chief strategy officer at ClariPhy, said Monday.

With the first generation of 100-Gbps optical transponders now available in the OIF MSA format, work is now underway to reduce the cost, size, and power consumption of such modules. Voois says that 28-nm CMOS technology will be an important contributor toward meeting this goal, which will not only benefit long-haul applications but make coherent transmission more economically palatable for metro networks as well. (And Voois is not alone in this thought; see “Fujitsu to display 28-nm CMOS ADCs at OFC.”)

In addition to the ADC and DAC in 28-nm silicon, ClariPhy says it also has produced a phase locked loop (PLL) driven by a standard commercial reference clock source. The devices will support not only 100-Gbps transmission, but 200-Gbps data rates as well.

Voois said that ClariPhy’s plans for marketing the 100G coherent chips will follow a similar strategy pursued for its previous 40G coherent devices. That means working with both development partners (see “Oclaro allies with ClariPhy for 100G coherent” and "Oclaro, OEMs behind most of ClariPhy’s $24M in Series C funding" for potential hints along these lines) as well as making the device available to systems and module developers at large.

Sumitomo Electric, meanwhile, will produce its own 100G coherent CFP. Voois declined to speculate on what other plans his partner might have for the optical engine. A source at Sumitomo Electric Device Innovations USA revealed that the optical engine integrates an integrable tunable laser assembly (iTLA), receiver, Mach-Zehnder modulator, and driver.

“2013 will be the year that metro 100G solutions are evaluated and selected by leading service providers, and pluggable coherent is near the top of their list according to our service provider surveys,” said Andrew Schmitt, principal analyst, optical, at Infonetics Research via a ClariPhy press release announcing next week’s demonstration. “This allows them to extend coherent 100G to vendor platforms without locking themselves into one equipment vendor’s coherent solution. ClariPhy and Sumitomo are clearly well positioned to meet a market need.”

For more information on communications ICs and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.

About the Author

Stephen Hardy | Editorial Director and Associate Publisher

Stephen Hardy has covered fiber optics for more than 15 years, and communications and technology for more than 30 years. He is responsible for establishing and executing Lightwave's editorial strategy across its digital magazine, website, newsletters, research and other information products. He has won multiple awards for his writing.

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