Acacia Communications offers 400-Gbps coherent transceiver module

Coherent optical module vendor Acacia Communications, having been first to market with a coherent transponder based on the OIF MSA as well as the initial provider of coherent CFP transceivers, appears to be first to market again at 400 Gbps. The company says it is sampling the AC-400, a flex-rate coherent 400G 5x7 transceiver module.

Coherent optical module vendor Acacia Communications, having been first to market with a coherent transponder based on the OIF MSA as well as the initial provider of coherent CFP transceivers, appears to be first to market again at 400 Gbps. The company says it is sampling the AC-400, a flex-rate coherent 400G 5x7 transceiver module.

The optical transceiver module leverages the fourth generation of Acacia's proprietary DSP technology, as well as silicon photonics based integration, to accommodate data rates of 100G, 200G, and 400G in a modest form factor, said President and CEO Raj Shanmugaraj. It supports 50-GHz spacing and is applicable to flexible grid DWDM networks, he added.

In addition to DP-QPSK and 16QAM, the module also can employ 8QAM for applications that require more capacity than DP-QPSK can provide at reaches longer than 16QAM typically can support. For example, Shanmugaraj reported interest in using the technology to support 300-Gbps transmission over submarine networks.

The heart of the module is a new dual-core ASIC called Denali that supports two optical channels for a total capacity of 400 Gbps at half the power of competing alternatives, Shanmugaraj asserted. This includes the ability to support a clear-channel, single 400G traffic flow, which Shanmugaraj says makes the module especially good for IP packet transport. The module also has built-in framing functionality for 100G and 400G Optical Transport Network (OTN) and Ethernet clients.

"The ability to launch 400G off a 5x7 transceiver module with advanced features like 8QAM and low power is well timed with the growth of the data center interconnect transport market, and Acacia's flexibility to scale from 100G to 400G is a major advantage," commented Simon Stanley, contributing analyst at Heavy Reading, via an Acacia Communications press release. "The module demonstrates silicon photonics PIC [photonic integrated circuit] performance for the higher-order modulation schemes and makes solutions like these very cost-effective for the market."

About 10 customers are on the list for samples, according to Shanmugaraj. The module should be in production by the end of the second quarter of this year, he projects.

For more information on optical transceivers and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer's Guide.

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