AES Semigas


2 March 2023

Scintil demos first single-chip 100GHz DFB comb laser source

In booth #3351 at the Optical Fiber Communication Conference (OFC 2023) in San Diego, CA, USA (5–9 March), Scintil Photonics of Grenoble, France and Toronto, Canada, a fabless developer of silicon photonic integrated circuits (integrated laser arrays, 800Gb/s transmitters and receivers, tunable transmitters and receivers, as well as optical I/O for near-chip and chip-chip communication), is demonstrating its latest technology, a single-chip multi-port 100GHz distributed feedback (DFB) comb laser source for high-performance computing (HPC) and artificial intelligence (AI) applications.

The SCINTIL Comb Laser Source is said to be the first fully integrated single chip that achieves 100GHz frequency spacing (half to one-quarter of the spacing available today). One of its key advantages is its very narrow controlled channel spacing, an important capability for increasing the number of optical carriers in a single fibre.

“Increasing computing capacity requires connecting larger networks of computing units with higher transmission rates,” says CEO Sylvie Menezo. “To achieve this with sustainable energy efficiency, fiber -optic transmission links are used with multiple optical carriers multiplexed on one single fiber,” she adds. “We have succeeded in implementing a comb laser source with only 100GHz spacing between each optical carrier. This offers at least twice the number of optical carriers compared to what appears to be available today, and therefore enables doubling the transmission speed. Leading customers are currently evaluating our solution.”

The increasing demand for high-performance computing and AI applications has led to the need for faster and more efficient optical interconnects. The SCINTIL 100GHz-Comb Laser Source enables the use of uncooled dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) links in short-reach transmissions, with optical carriers twice as dense (100GHz versus 200GHz spacing).

“The Scintil integrated team did an excellent job at every step, from the design of the chip to the packaging and the electronics for a complete solution, with additional locking functions,” says Menezo. “Thanks to our CMOS commercial foundry, we anticipate ramping up volume by Q4/2024. We think that our technology will be a game-changer in the field of interconnects for high-performance computing and AI applications.”

Technical features

The DFB comb laser source is designed to fuel optics co-packaged with host ASICs. Features include:

  • multiple optical carriers spaced by 100GHz and all combined and available on either one or multiple output ports;
  • configurations that can offer transmissions of 16 optical carriers x 64Gbps per fiber, which are suitable to support next-generation optical compute interconnect links;
  • easy locking capabilities, providing system makers with unmatched characteristics for control and performance.

Demonstrators are already available and product prototypes will be ready by the end of Q4/2023.

Also at OFC on 6 March (17:30–17:45 PT) in M4C.5, room 3, Scintil is presenting a paper ‘Fully Integrated III-V-on-Silicon Multi-Port DFB Laser Comb Source for 100GHz DWDM’.

In other developments, Scintil is expanding its Grenoble office, with current openings for a chief financial officer with administrative functions, a senior product development engineer, and a semiconductor packaging engineer.

See related items:

Scintil unveils III-V-augmented silicon photonic IC

Tags: InP silicon photonics PIC