Monday, September 18, 2017

New double density SFP pluggable spec nears completion

The Small Form Factor Pluggable Double Density (SFP-DD) Multi Source Agreement (MSA) Group, which is backed by leading vendors, has released an initial hardware specification for an SFP-DD pluggable interface.

Founding members of the group include Alibaba, Broadcom, Brocade, Cisco, Dell EMC, Finisar, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, Intel, Juniper Networks, Lumentum, Mellanox Technologies, Molex, and TE Connectivity.

The SFP-DD goal is to standardize a high-density, pluggable form factor interface that builds on the existing SFP pluggable form factor by leveraging an additional 2 rows of electrical contacts for double the lane density and data speed in next-generation networking equipment. The new spec will support up to 3.5 W optical modules in an enterprise environment.

SFP-DD key features include

  • A single port SMT connector and cage
  • Heat sink options for thermal management flexibility
  • Module mechanical definition
  • Support for optical and copper interfaces, with physical layer specifications to be determined outside the scope of the SFP-DD MSA
SFP-DD key benefits include

  • Support for up to 3.5 W for optical modules
  • Enables two channels of high-speed electrical interfaces connecting to host
  • Backward compatibility to all current SFP style interfaces
  • Developed by industry consortium to enable multi-vendor interoperability

Kaiam reaches volume production of 100G CWDM4 transceivers

Kaiam, a manufacturer of optical transceivers for hyperscale data centers based in Newark, California, has begun shipping its XQX5000-series of QSFP28 100G-CWDM4 transceivers in commercial volume.

The new transceivers are based on the company's LightScale2 architecture, which eliminates hermetic “gold boxes” and flex circuits. Kaiam maintains large-scale manufacturing in Livingston, Scotland.

The company reports that the LightScale2 production ramp has gone very smoothly.

“Our UK factory has manufactured traditional hermetic TOSAs and ROSAs in high volumes for years. The LightScale2 platform is far simpler to manufacture in terms of assembly steps, capital equipment, and labor. This has allowed us to ramp to high volumes with high yields much more quickly than was possible with more complex legacy products,” stated Russell Childs, GM of Kaiam Europe Ltd.

Kaiam CEO Bardia Pezeshki added, “Our micromechanical alignment technology allows multimode packaging techniques to be used in a single mode application. The Lightscale2 platform is optimized to deliver maximum value and performance in the data center environment at dramatically lower costs than traditionally aligned hybrid approaches.”

VPIphotonics and Fraunhofer HHI showcase DSP algorithms for coherent optical

Berlin-based VPIphotonics, which is a provider of photonic design automation solutions for components, systems and networks, has collaborated with the Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz-Institute (HHI) to develop Digital Signal Processing (DSP) algorithms for coherent optical transmission systems.

The new version 3.0 of the VPItoolkit DSP Library is now available as a pluggable toolkit for the company's VPItransmissionMaker Optical Systems, which is a simulation platform for optical transmission systems addressing applications from short-reach to ultra-long-haul. This can be used by developers to simulate arbitrary 2D, 4D and even N dimensional modulation formats, and bit stream en-/decoding using soft and hard decision FEC codes.

The new release of the VPItoolkit DSP Library is also available as pluggable toolkit to the company's VPIlabExpert product, which delivers a set of interface modules for automatic signal conversion and transfer between simulation software and lab equipment.

VPIphotonics said the new version of its VPItoolkit DSP Library, along with its simulation and analysis tools, can significantly accelerate and improve the R&D process as it enables a diversity of important transmitter and receiver-side DSP functions for coherent optical systems. Key functionality includes, but is not limited to, non-linear pre-distortion, I/Q imbalance correction, blind CD estimation and compensation, data-aided channel equalization, clock recovery and deskew, carrier frequency and phase recovery, polarization demultiplexing and PMD compensation.

The new version also introduces a 4x4 multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) adaptive equalizer that can perform additional compensation of I/Q imbalance and skew in received signals.

VPIphotonics is demonstrating its VPItoolkit DSP Library Version 3.0 at this week's ECOC 2017 in Gothenburg, Sweden (booth 334).

John Chambers to step down as chairman of Cisco

John Chambers will step down as Executive Chairman of the Cisco Board of Directors in December and he will not stand for re-election to the board of directors.

Cisco's Board plans appoint Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins to serve as its next chairman. Chambers will be given the honorary title of Chairman Emeritus.

Chambers served as CEO of Cisco from January 1995 to July 26, 2015, and as Executive Chairman since then.  Chuck Robbins has served as CEO since July 26, 2015.

Equinix opens another Silicon Valley data center - its 13th

Equinix inaugurated its thirteenth International Business Exchange (IBX) data center in Silicon Valley.

The new $122M facility, named SV10, is located at Equinix's Great Oaks campus in San Jose, which also hosts its SV1 and SV5 data centers. The initial phase of SV10 will add 37,000+ square feet (3,400+ square meters) of colocation space, enough for 930 cabinets. Two additional expansion phases are planned, which will bring the SV10 facility to a total capacity of 2,820 cabinets.

Equinix noted that its Silicon Valley sites now host more than 125 service providers, along with cloud services such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, Oracle Cloud and others through the Equinix Cloud Exchange.

Versa Networks lands a key SD-WAN contract with China Telecom Global

China Telecom Global Limited (CTG) has selected Versa Networks as its primary vendor for software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) and security (SD-Security). Financial terms were not disclosed.

CTG delivers worldwide networking services to the growing base of Chinese companies with overseas branches. Its managed SD-WAN service is built on Versa’s suite of virtualized network and security functions (VNFs).

Versa confirmed that CTG is deploying its multi-tenant SD-WAN and SD-Security solution in 15 cloud hubs globally for distributed reach and centralized control. CTG is deploying Versa’s SD-WAN software on low-cost x86 appliances at its customer's branch offices.

Intel Capital's AI Investments top $1 billion

Intel Capital has now invested over $1 billion in companies devoted to the advancement of artificial intelligence.

In a blog post, Intel's CEO Brian Krzanich said the company is fully committed to making its silicon the "platform of choice" for AI developers. Key areas of AI development inside Intel include:

  • Intel Xeon Scalable family of processors for evolving AI workloads. Intel also offers purpose-built silicon for deep learning training, code-named “Lake Crest”
  • Intel Mobileye vision technologies for specialized use cases such as active safety and autonomous driving
  • Intel FPGAs, which can serve as programmable accelerators for deep learning inference
  • Intel Movidius low-power vision technology, which provides machine learning at the edge.

Intel Nervana Aims for AI

Intel introduced its "Nervana" platform and outlined its broad for artificial intelligence (AI), encompassing a range of new products, technologies and investments from the edge to the data center.

Intel currently powers 97 percent of data center servers running AI workloads on its existing Intel Xeon processors and Intel Xeon Phi processors, along with more workload-optimized accelerators, including FPGAs (field-programmable gate arrays).

Intel said the breakthrough technology acquired from Nervana earlier this summer will be integrated into its product roadmap. Intel will test first silicon (code-named “Lake Crest”) in the first half of 2017 and will make it available to key customers later in the year. In addition, Intel announced a new product (code-named “Knights Crest”) on the roadmap that tightly integrates best-in-class Intel Xeon processors with the technology from Nervana. Lake Crest is optimized specifically for neural networks to deliver the highest performance for deep learning and offers unp

Telefónica Business to offer Clean Pipes security with Palo Alto Networks

Telefónica Business Solutions is introducing "Clean Pipes 2.0", a software-based security service that was developed in conjunction with ElevenPaths, Telefónica's cyber security unit, and Palo Alto Networks.

The service is delivered as a service via Telefónica Business Solutions' virtual network infrastructure. It provides features such as an application-layer firewall, advanced protection against known and unknown threats, web filtering, and intrusion prevention, amongst others.

The companies claim the cloud-based Network Function Virtualization (NFV) architecture brings reduced operational costs to organizations in terms of purchasing, deployment and maintenance, without sacrificing effectiveness or performance.