Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Kaiam partners with Broadex to manufacture optical modules in China

Kaiam, which is a leading supplier of optical transceivers for hyperscale data centers, signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Broadex concerning the volume production of QSFP28 100G-CWDM4 transceivers in China based on Kaiam’s LightScale2 platform.

Kaiam says its LightScale2 architecture offer fundamental advantages in cost and performance and is ideally suited for high-volume applications.


The agreement allows Broadex to manufacture these units in China and directly address Chinese customers who require local production. This also complements Kaiam’s in-house manufacturing in the UK and provides further capacity to address the high volume data center market.

Broadex Technologies is located in Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, and operates an R&D center in Shanghai. Its product portfolio includes PLC splitters, arrayed waveguide gratings (AWGs), variable optical attenuators (VOAs), Variable Optical Power Multiplexer (VMUX), and optical sub-assembly (OSA) for transceivers.

“We anticipate very strong demand for 100G transceivers based on our LightScale2 technology,” said Dietmar Zapf, GM / VP of Manufacturing at Kaiam. “In addition to the production lines already running at our Livingston, UK facility, we need to develop and secure further expanded capacity for manufacturing these products in high volume. The MOU signed with Broadex would allow us to leverage Broadex’s manufacturing expertise and infrastructure and expand our capacity in the next 3–6 months to meet high demand.”

“We are glad that Kaiam chose to continue working with us for manufacturing its new non-hermetic transceivers for data center applications,” said Yong Ding, PhD, VP and CTO of Broadex Technologies. “We have been producing OSA-level components for Kaiam in high volumes for several years now. The LightScale2 platform is optimized to deliver maximum value and performance in the data center environment at dramatically lower costs. We will work aggressively to quickly ramp to high volumes with high yields.”

Kaiam debuts 400G QSFP-DD

Kaiam unveiled an 8-lane, single-mode 400G transceiver in a QSFP-DD form factor at OFC 2018.

The new device, which is enabled by the company's LightScale2 architecture used in its XQX5000 series of 100GBASE-CWDM4 QSFP28 pluggables, is optimized for high-volume, low-cost manufacturing.

The company said its LightScale2 platform supports both 4-lane and 8-lane 200G and 400G transceiver variants, including 400G-LR8/FR8, 400G-FR4, 2x100G-LR4, 2x100G-CWDM4, 2x100G-4WDM-10, 200G-FR4, and 2x200G-FR4. These can be supported in either QSFP-DD or OSFP packages. The platform can further extend to future 800G solutions, and even beyond pluggables to Kaiam’s Co-Packaged Photonics Interconnect (CoPPhI).

“As capacity and density requirements increase in the data center, our MEMS-based PLC approach further outperforms traditional approaches,” commented Bardia Pezeshki, CEO. “At OFC 2018, we are demonstrating a transceiver that has 4x the bandwidth of the previous generation in roughly the same QSFP form factor, highlighting the bandwidth and density scalability of Kaiam’s technology.”

“We’re seeing market need for 400G QSFP-DD transceivers in 2019, but uncertainty and skepticism about whether transceiver vendors can deliver cost-effective solutions at scale with the high speeds needed per lane and the desired reach. Our ability to offer a simple 8-channel 400G solution in advance of the more complex 4-channel electronics, with the full 10km reach, gives the customers faster and easier access to 400G in the desired compact form factor,” commented Jeremy Dietz, VP of Global Sales & Marketing.

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