Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Mindspeed Debuts 288x288 Crosspoint Switch for Optical and Broadcast

Mindspeed Technologies announced the world's first 288x288 asynchronous non-blocking crosspoint switch, providing 82,944 unique switching paths in a single, monolithic integrated circuit (IC). Applications include serial data switches for broadcast video and optical transport networks.

Mindspeed's M21170 chip is a 288x288 non-blocking matrix for a router's switching core, replacing four cascaded 144x144 crosspoints required to achieve the same number of inputs and outputs. Mindspeed said this method significantly reduces the size, cost and complexity of today's largest switchers. Each switching path in the M21170 can operate independently at any data rate of up to 3.2 Gbps, allowing for multi-rate routing and switching in a single device. The crosspoint also uses Mindspeed's proven signal-conditioning technology to compensate for signal losses that typically accumulate across the extended trace lengths of very large systems.

"This is a major milestone for the video broadcast industry, on the road to significantly larger, more capable multi-format SD and HD switchers," said Kurt Busch, senior vice president and general manager of Mindspeed's high-performance analog business unit. "A few years ago, a 256x256 routing switcher was considered very large; now, 512x512 and 576x576 switchers are in hot demand, and broadcasters are asking for even larger switches. The size of these large routers is limited only by the size of the switching core, and now manufacturers can replace up to four cascaded 144x144 crosspoints with a single 288x288 solution."

Crosspoint switches are also used to implement circuit switched backplanes with hundreds of high speed serial links such as those found in OTN/DWDM systems.