28 January 2010


Opnext delivers first SMT multiplexer IC for 100G; 128Gb/s SiGe chip designed for DP-QPSK modulation

Optical component, module and subsystem maker Opnext Inc of Fremont, CA, USA claims that it has developed the world’s first ultra-high-speed surface-mount technology (SMT) multiplexer integrated circuit (IC) for 100Gb/s applications.

The chip — fabricated using silicon germanium (SiGe) 0.13 micron process technology — was designed in-house to be used inside Opnext’s coherent 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s transponder modules and subsystems. The 128Gb/s multiplexer IC transmits the data in 32Gb/s lanes suitable for transmission using the DP-QPSK (dual-polarization quadrature phase shift keying) modulation scheme, as documented in the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) 100G ultra-long-haul DWDM Framework, for 100 Gigabit Ethernet (100GbE) and OTU4 transmission in the wide-area network (WAN).

The multiplexer IC also employs ball grid array (BGA) technology to allow standard SMT manufacturing processes, enabling higher-density transponder designs with ICs mounted directly onto the printed circuit boards.

“One of the major challenges of increasing 40G production was the manufacturability, quality and performance consistency of the hardware,” says Roberto Marcoccia, VP of R&D for Opnext’s subsystems business unit. “This SMT IC eliminates the radio frequency connectors and coaxial cabling, a major source of these volume manufacturing issues,” he adds.

Opnext says that it continues to employ selective vertical integration on components such as this new SMT IC, with the goal of delivering to its OEM partners the lowest-cost and highest-performance solution compliant with the 100Gb/s OIF multi-source agreement (MSA).

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