21 September 2010


GigOptix launches low-power multi-rate SMART optical sub-assemblies

At the 36th European Conference and Exhibition on Optical Communications (ECOC 2010) in Turin, Italy this week (20–22 September), GigOptix Inc of Palo Alto, CA, USA is demonstrating its new family of ultra-low-power multi-rate SMART optical sub-assemblies (OSAs), targeting 2–14Gb/s short-reach datacom applications. 

The SMART receive OSA (HXR2101A) and transmit OSA (HXT2101A) are based on a new generation of GigOptix vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) driver and transimpedance amplifier/limiting amplifier (TIA/LA) chips. The firm has leveraged its mixed-signal experience in high-volume parallel optics devices to combine RF analog circuit techniques that reduce power consumption with integrated on-chip analog-to-digital convertors (ADCs) and digital-to-analog convertors (DACs) to enable a fully digitally controlled TOSA and ROSA.

This architecture simplifies the design of an optical transceiver such as an SFP+ by eliminating all analog and RF circuits from the PCB. The elimination of RF analog interfaces improves performance and reduces both power consumption and EMI within the transceiver. The new architecture also drives down costs while reducing the engineering effort associated with developing a solution, says GigOptix.

The introduction of the SMART ROSA and TOSA allows customers a seamless and low-cost deployment using the firm’s ‘plug and play’ components, GigOptix claims.

“The devices were designed for lead customers seeking a very energy-efficient data link. Our OSAs enable pluggable solutions running at less than 200mW and intra-system links at less than 120mW,” says Dr Jorg Wieland, VP & general manager of GigOptix-Helix, Zurich. “The SMART OSAs were also designed to be very easy to use. The integrated digital I2C control simplifies the engineering of an optical transceiver and reduces the components needed to only a microcontroller and our SMART ROSA and TOSA,” he adds. “This will be a substantial cost saving for transceiver manufacturers,” Wieland expects. “Also, we see the potential for SMART OSAs to be used in consumer, industrial and avionics applications, since these devices will simplify the implementation of high-speed links within a system and are more robust than 10G copper.”

In its most recent report on datacom components, market analyst firm Ovum forecasted that the 10G Ethernet and Fiber Channel short-reach market would increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22% from under 11 million units in 2010 to more than 29 million units in 2015.

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