Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Inphi Launches ColorZ 100G PAM4 platform, unveils 16 nm CMOS PAM4

Inphi, a provider of high-speed interconnect solutions, announced the commercial availability and production ramp of ColorZ, which it claims is the first silicon photonics 100 Gbit/s PAM4 platform for 80 km DWDM data centre interconnect (DCI) in QSFP28 form factor, and introduced the Polaris 16 nm CMOS PAM4 solution.


First unveiled at OFC 2016, Inphi's ColorZ utilises advanced PAM4 signalling and is able to support up to 4 Tbit/s of bandwidth over a single fibre, allowing multiple data centres located within 80 km of each other to be connected and behave as a single data centre facility.

The ColorZ DWDM platform offers key features including: support for 100 Gigabit Ethernet; extended reach up to 80 km; 4.5 W power dissipation; compatibility with ITU wavelength grid; InphiNity core DSP engine with a mixed-mode DSP architecture for low power applications requiring adaptability and configurability; and multiple programmable FEC options, with varying levels of pre-FEC BER performance.

At OFC 2017, Inphi is carrying out live interoperability demonstrations of its ColorZ QSFP28 solution, including driving 3.6 Tbit/s of bi-directional east-west traffic over 80 km of fibre between two Arista 7500R platforms, and 100 Gbit/s line cards connected via AVDA direct detect Open Line System (OLS) with SmartAmp technology.

The demonstration is designed to showcase the simplicity and plug-and-play capabilities of the ColorZ technology, and to demonstrate its ability to offer a cost-effective solution for edge data centre connectivity.


Inphi's new Polaris offering is claimed to be the first 16 nm CMOS PAM4 solution for next-generation cloud deployments and includes the company's integrated, low power PAM4 DSP IC and low power linear driver and TIA for data centre connectivity.

Inphi's 16 nm PAM4 DSP PHY ICs provide a full bi-directional interface with host ASICs that have 28 GBaud PAM4 and NRZ electrical interfaces and support bridging to 28 GBaud PAM4 optics. The products also support retiming and gearbox functionality, with packaging designed for the following optics modules:

1. Polaris-400G, 8 x 56 Gbit/s PAM4, 16 x 28 Gbit/s NRZ gearbox for CFP8.

2. Polaris-400G (NG), 8 x 56 Gbit/s, 8 x 56 Gbit/s PAM4 retiming for OSFP/QSFP-DD.

3. Polaris-200G, 4 x 56 Gbit/s, 4 x 56 Gbit/s PAM4 retiming for QSFP56.

4. Polaris-100G, 2 x 56 Gbit/s, 2 x 56 Gbit/s PAM4 retiming for QSFP28.

5. Polaris-50G, 1 x 56 Gbit/s, 1 x 56 Gbit/s PAM4 retiming for SFP56.

The Polaris products also feature the InphiNity DSP engine with mixed-mode DSP architecture, a range of self-test and loopback modes for diagnostic monitoring of channel and system parameters, eye-scan, samplers and monitors on receiver interfaces, and API routines for data and error analytics.

Inphi noted that its IN2834 28 Gbaud low power quad linear driver: and IN2864 28 Gbaud low power quad linear TIA for PAM4 optical modules are currently sampling to lead customers.