Aeluros cuts IC power in half with the introduction of 10-Gbit/sec serial transceiver device

April 21, 2003
21 April 2003 Mountain View, CA Lightwave - Aeluros today introduced the first product in its line of physical layer devices for the networking market, the Puma AEL1001 10-Gbit/sec-to-XAUI serial transceiver IC.

21 April 2003 Mountain View, CA Lightwave - Aeluros today introduced the first product in its line of physical layer devices for the networking market, the Puma AEL1001 10-Gbit/sec-to-XAUI serial transceiver IC.

Using Hi-DensiPHY power reduction technology, Puma devices can provide a typical power consumption of 800 mW, up to 60% less than currently available options, according to the company. When combined with the inherent cost and integration advantages of CMOS process technology, this power reduction will enable new levels of edge density and accelerate growth in the burgeoning 10-Gbit/sec marketplace, the company believes.

The 10-Gbit/sec node represents a landmark convergence of physical layer implementations for data communications, storage and telecommunications systems. The rapid adoption of Gigabit Ethernet on the desktop and the growing dominance of 2-Gbit/sec fibre channel in the storage market are increasing bandwidth demands throughout the network. A variety of multi-source agreements (MSAs), including XENPAK, XPAK, and X2, define the implementation of 10-Gbit/sec optical modules with a XAUI-based system interface. In addition, the XFP MSA, officially ratified earlier this year, brings 10-Gbit/sec serial XFI signaling directly to the line card. Puma devices provide a low-power solution for both applications, addressing power and price constraints for module and system vendors alike.

"An optical transceiver module is a small, tightly enclosed space, and presents a challenging operating environment highly sensitive to thermal issues," said Osa Mok, co-founder and vice president of marketing at Pine Photonics. "Any module component able to offer a power savings of several hundred milliwatts or more will distinctly minimize this impact, greatly enhancing our ability to reliably maintain superior performance and eliminate extraneous cooling costs."

"The growth of 10-Gbit/sec signaling will be driven by 10 Gigabit Ethernet, 10 Gigabit fibre channel, and high port-count line cards," said Jag Bolaria, senior analyst at the Linley Group. "Low power is critical for increased linecard density, and Aeluros has set the mark for low power among 10-Gbit/sec PHY suppliers."

The Puma devices provide a physical layer bridge between a 10.3125-Gbit/sec or 10.51875-Gbit/sec serial signal and a 4-lane, 3.125-Gbit/sec or 3.1875-Gbit/sec XAUI interface, including full implementation of 10 Gigabit Ethernet PCS/PMA functionality and support for both the IEEE 802.3ae 10 Gigabit Ethernet and INCITS 10 Gigabit Fibre Channel specifications. The 10-Gbit/sec link provides a robust high-performance solution, and exceeds the 10 Gigabit Ethernet jitter requirements, while the XAUI interface is fully functional across a 40-inch FR4 backplane. The Puma device links have also been independently verified through successful interoperability with 10 Gigabit Ethernet LAN and XAUI performance modules from Ixia as well as third party XENPAK optical transceiver modules.

These devices offer an extensive feature set including an integrated limiting amplifier with 10 mV sensitivity, extended diagnostic and control signaling capabilities, and a flexible interface including multiple loopback modes and internal test pattern generation. Puma devices have full support for Revision 3 of the XENPAK specification, including support for digital optical monitoring registers. The devices are housed in the small footprint of a 144-pin 13-mm x 13-mm BGA package.

Puma devices are also significantly cheaper to produce than competing products. They are manufactured in a mainstream digital CMOS process technology that does not require any specialized process options. The devices' low power consumption allows them to be packaged in an inexpensive wire-bond plastic BGA without the use of a heat spreader or other thermal enhancement.

These are the first production devices to be built using the company's 10-Gbit/sec links and Hi-DensiPHY power reduction technology. The 10-Gbit/sec implementation was developed via the previously announced Bobcat verification vehicle -- the world's first quad channel 10-Gbit/sec IC. The Bobcat device provided a serial link environment equivalent to a torture test of I/O and digital logic noise, and was verified both by the Aeluros team and by independent customer validation. The Puma product represents the culmination of a $5 million investment in 10-Gbit/sec serial technology that has enabled Aeluros to begin the methodical yet rapid deployment of a variety of 10-Gbit/sec serial devices in a predictable, deterministic manner.

The Puma AEL1001 device is sampling today, and customer evaluation kits are now available. These kits provide a complete characterization environment for the Puma product, including an evaluation board, GUI-based software design package, reference design material and documentation. The Puma AEL1001 device is priced at $150 in high-volume quantities.

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