Showing posts with label COBO. Show all posts
Showing posts with label COBO. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

COBO demos packet transmission between On-Board and MSA modules

At this week's ECOC 2019 in Dublin, the Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) showcased compliance boards built to its recently completed Module Compliance Board (MCB) and Host Compliance Board (HCB) specification. Members also demonstrated the latest developments of optical connectivity solutions for faceplate, backplane, module and co-packaged optics.

Of note, a COBO proof-of-concept switch was demonstrating error-free packet transmission between COBO modules, OSFP modules and QSFP-DD modules. The 400GBASE-SR8 connections were between all module form factors. The OSFP and QSFP-DD modules operated at 10W; whereas, the COBO module had a 30% power savings by operating at under 7W. The ability to place the COBO module closer to the switch ASIC greatly improved the signal integrity performance of the connection permitting the COBO module to use a clock and data recovery (CDR) chip instead of a digital signal processing (DSP) chip.

“Member collaboration has enabled COBO to offer the industry’s first live traffic demonstration of an on-board optics switch based upon COBO’s specification and demonstrating the improved power efficiency of on-board optics,” said Brad Booth, President of COBO.  “COBO members have worked diligently to develop an industry-first specification for on-board optical modules and compliance boards to lower the barrier to entry for implementing on-board optics.”

http://onboardoptics.org






Thursday, May 9, 2019

Cabling for High Density Interconnects with Tom Marrapode of Molex



Molex's COBO reference board showcases routing ribbon technology, formed ribbon technology, round cables, optical shuffles and optical flex planes.  All these Molex cabling options give system and mechanical designers the ability to go from COBO modules to the panel front or back with single or multi-mode fiber.

https://youtu.be/35xs5FufbuU





Sunday, April 28, 2019

Video: Ciena's Hugues Tournier on COBO's working groups

COBO's Data Center Networking Group has two workgroups: mechanical and electrical. Considering the OIF 400ZR and the IEEE, COBO selects the Class C Connector as explained by Hugues Tournier of Ciena.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

SENKO Showcases Future of Photonics Integration with The SN Connector



SENKO Components Jim Hasagawa and Tiger Ninomiya showcase SENKO's newest photonics integrated SN Connector designed by COBO standards.

 The SN Connector accelerates 400Gbps applications by eliminating the need for a breakout cable as the SN Connector runs 64 fiber lanes with the breakout at the adapter front panel.

https://youtu.be/aVs3GW2BEfU

Monday, April 15, 2019

David Chen of Applied Optoelectronics (AOI) discusses on-board optics



David Chen of AOI explains how Cobo provides a nice single platform for a very flexible integration path from 400G, 800G to 1.6T Modules at OFC in March 2019.

https://youtu.be/jBjEzU07FFc

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Video: Samtec's Optical FireFly inspires COBO modules



Arlon Martin of Samtec discusses how the Optical Firefly is an inspiration for COBO's small embedded form factor on-board optical modules at OFC March 2019.

https://youtu.be/TpHz0x-WFnU


Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Video: The Road to On-Board Optics w Nathan Tracy of TE Connectivity



One minute video: Nathan Tracy at TE Connectivity discusses how COBO utilizes TE's high-speed connector and how the two companies form an industry partnership to enable new aggregate bandwidth rates for next-generation optical data centers.

https://youtu.be/_QNJqZY_RGg


Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Video: Consortium for On-Board Optics -- OFC tour with Brad Booth


Brad Booth takes us on a tour of the OFC 2019 demonstration conducted by the Consortium For On-Board Optics.

The COBO booth featured for the first time a 14 vendor ecosystem of COBO compliant products, including the world's only 12.6T Switch with multiple optical connectors.

https://youtu.be/lRQk9idtdNg



Tuesday, January 22, 2019

AOI samples 400G silicon-photonics module based on COBO

Applied Optoelectronics (AOI) has begun sampling 400G optical modules designed to demonstrate the feasibility of on-board optics (OBO), as outlined in specifications such as the recently-released version 1.1 of the onboard optical module specification published by the Consortium for Onboard Optics (COBO). AOI is an active member of COBO.

In contrast to traditional pluggable optical modules, OBO modules are designed to be used in higher-speed data switches, with interface speeds ranging from 400 Gbps to 1.6 Tbps. By designing the optical modules to be mated directly to a circuit board within such a switch, the OBO modules enable an increase in the density of optical interfaces to the switch, which in turn enables greater data throughput through the switch fabric, while also simplifying cooling and electrical interfaces, two areas where traditional pluggable modules have increasing difficulty as interface speeds increase.

AOI said its sample OBO modules are specifically designed for customers developing next-generation switches for large data centers, as these switches gradually evolve from 100 Gbps interconnects to 400 Gpbs, and higher. The modules currently leverage new silicon-based optical technology to support 16 optical channels with a total data throughput of 400 Gbps. Future versions of the device are expected to leverage the same silicon-photonics technology, but increase the bandwidth up to 100 Gbps per optical channel, ultimately enabling 1.6 Tbps of data throughput over a single OBO module. In turn, this would enable next-generation 12.8 Tbps switches to utilize only 8 optical modules, significantly improving density and reducing power consumption compared to a similar solution, which would require 32 400-Gbps pluggable modules.

“We gathered very positive feedback while demonstrating early 16-channel OBO prototypes at the European Conference on Optical Communications (ECOC) in Rome last year,” commented David Chen, AOI’s AVP of Transceiver Technology. “We are very excited to take the next step in offering samples to our customers. This OBO module incorporates several new technologies, including an advanced silicon-photonics based optical sub-assembly, which are the culmination of years of R&D effort by AOI and our technology partners. We believe that this platform will enable solutions well beyond 400 Gbps, and eventually, 1.6 Tbps.”

“AOI has made significant progress on the development of OBO modules since the publication of revision 1.0 of COBO’s specification,” stated Brad Booth, President of the Consortium for On-Board Optics. “AOI’s ability to sample OBO modules after their ECOC demonstration of an OBO prototype shows their commitment to bringing alternative solutions for the next generation of networking equipment. Having a single module footprint that supports bandwidth scaling from 400 Gbps to 1.6 Tbps provides flexibility to equipment vendors.”

http://ao-inc.com/news-events/applied-optoelectronics-announces-sampling-of-400g-silicon-photonics-optica

Thursday, September 20, 2018

ECOC 2018: First COBO-compliant optical modules

The world’s first optical modules compliant with Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) will be shown at next week's ECOC Exhibition 2018 in Rome, Italy.

Specifically, COBO will present a showcase of solutions from Molex, Ciena and SENKO, TE Connectivity, Credo, and AOI.

A goal of COBO is to bring interoperable and interchangeable optical modules into the manufacturing of networking equipment to help address industry challenges, including continual traffic growth, the need for lower power consumption and the increasing speeds of networking technologies such as 400 Gigabit Ethernet.

“Next-generation technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, 5G, and the Internet of Things (IoT) are progressing at a rapid rate and all stand to benefit from equipment manufacturers’ adoption of on-board optics,” said Brad Booth, President of COBO. “The data produced by these applications needs to move efficiently and rapidly between devices and the demonstrations not only represent a significant step forward in achieving this through board-mounted optical modules but also a big step towards mass deployment of interoperable solutions.”

Some highlights:

  • Molex will display a COBO module-based reference layout board that includes high-density front panel Optical EMI shielding adapters, a blind-mate optical backplane interconnect and an on-card optical cabling featuring FlexPlane technology. The demo will highlight how system vendors can utilize Molex optical cable management technologies to integrate COBO on-board optical modules into next-generation system architectures.
  • Ciena and SENKO will show how low-profile face plate connector solutions can enhance the air flow capability and fiber management inside equipment, which will include the CS Connector, a new high-density solution, MPO PLUS Bayonet, and μ-LC that can create more space inside the equipment. In addition, two white papers will be available. The first looks at Data Center Interconnect traffic growth and how this drives the need for increased electrical high-speed signaling, best in-class layout and selection of printed circuit board laminate, where analysis is made of different material properties in the context of COBO applications and verification is made of the compliance to OIF CEI-56G-VSR-PAM4. The second study performs a thermal assessment including the coherent application in context to verify thermal capabilities of the COBO module for 14.4Tb/s capacity 1RU line card.
  • A 112Gbps demonstration will be performed jointly by TE Connectivity and Credo via a test set-up that provides a feasibility demonstration for future COBO applications using 100Gbps electrical lanes based on TE Connectivity’s channel and high-speed connector driven by Credo Semiconductor transceiver silicon.
  • AOI will exhibit a 400G 16 lane on-board optics device that can achieve 2km reach at 1310nm wavelength. It leverages the COBO form factor, electrical pin out and electrical connector specifications released earlier this year. AOI is taking advantage of the SiP technology for this compact device which has a highly integrated design for an on-board optics module.

COBO - Stand 608 at ECOC Exhibition 2018



Filmed at NetEvents 2018 in San Jose, California


A look at COBO and the drive for on-board optics


The Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) was formed three years ago to develop specifications to permit the use of board-mounted optical modules in the manufacturing of networking equipment, such as switches and even servers. The specifications will cover electrical interfaces, pin-outs, connectors, thermals, etc.  The idea is to drive the development of interchangeable and interoperable optical modules that can be mounted onto motherboards...



Friday, June 1, 2018

A look at COBO and the drive for on-board optics

The Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) was formed three years ago to develop specifications to permit the use of board-mounted optical modules in the manufacturing of networking equipment, such as switches and even servers. The specifications will cover electrical interfaces, pin-outs, connectors, thermals, etc.  The idea is to drive the development of interchangeable and interoperable optical modules that can be mounted onto motherboards and daughtercards. Microsoft is a founding member of COBO, as are Arista, Broadcom, Cisco, Juniper, and Mellanox. In April, COBO issued its first on-board optics specification targeting 400 Gbps and 800 Gbps data rates and leveraging two electrical interfaces: 8 and 16 lanes of 50-gigabit PAM-4 signals.

I caught up with Brad Booth, president of COBO, at the recent NetEvents 2018 in San Jose, California. In his day job, Brad is also a Network Architect with Microsoft Azure.

Jim Carroll, Optical Networks Daily – Hi Brad, good to see you again. Tell us about your work and the latest developments in the drive toward on-board optics.

Brad Booth, COBO:  I am the president of COBO. That is my volunteer job. My full-time job is a Network Architect for Microsoft Azure. 

A few months ago, COBO, the Consortium for Onboard Optics released our specification 1.0 specification in time for OFC and now we're going around letting people know about it because it is a game changer for how to use embedded optics. Traditionally, embedded optics have been proprietary solutions. We knew that as we progress the technology and move from 10G to 40G to 100G to 400G, and whatever speed comes next, the ability to continue to use faceplate optics is presenting greater complexities. 

First, the thermal environment was getting a little harder to deal with. Signal integrity was becoming more difficult to deal with. The fact that you had people plugging these modules in, which were very sensitive to ASD and sensitive to noise, resulting in damage. And we decided that we needed to start the progression of moving the optics away from the faceplate and closer to the ASIC, if not on to the same footprint of the ASIC eventually. We knew that at 400G it was possible to do faceplate pluggable. We knew in time people would figure out how to do an optics embedded with ASICs, but what was going to be the thing that would allow us that transition in between. What would allow us to have the learnings and the understanding of how this will change our business models. That’s why we came up with COBO.


What is COBO implementation actually going to look like?

Brad Booth, COBO: This is a COBO module. It is a by 16 wide, which means it is a 16-lane interface on one side. This module was designed for the output of four 100G PSM4 signals  This is the medium size version of the module. It comes in a by-8 and a by-16 version. It comes in three lengths: slightly shorter than this, this length, and slightly longer. That allows us to be able to use this module literally from multimode fiber all the way up to long-haul coherent transmission. 
The module at its widest form factor is capable of accepting up to 40 watts of power to drive whatever component tree we need in it. 

It's capable of having a full 1RU heatsink, or greater if we want. You can even do liquid cooling on this if you want. There's the capability of latching either on the high-speed pins or the low-speed pin connector on the bottom. We separated the low-speed power and ground and control away from the high speed to improve the signal integrity. The nice thing is these pins on the bottom are .8mm pitch, which means that we get lots of good contact and power. There is also .6mm pitch, which should be able to handle up to 100 Gbps PAM4 electrical signaling. This means that future iterations of this module will be capable of 1.6 Tbps worth of bandwidth.


What kind of support or feedback are you getting from the industry?

Brad Booth, COBO:  We have over 60 member companies participating in COBO now. Many of them are very well known in the industry. Cisco, Arista, Juniper. Mellanox. We have connector companies involved too., like SEMTECH, TE Connectivity, Luxtera. We have companies that specialize in optical connectors, like SENKO, Huber+Suhner, etc. We have a strong ecosystem. 

We have to figure out how to move those optics from the faceplate further inside the systems to improve the signal integrity, and we have to be able to do it without drawing massive amount of power. And that's one of the advantages of having so many people in the ecosystem that play in this area, we have a lot of good contributions.


Filmed at NetEvents 2018 in San Jose, California

Is COBO targeting 400G and above? Are higher rates going to be supported? 

Brad Booth, COBO: This module is actually a four by 100. So it has 400 gigs worth of bandwidth in it right now. If you were to build it to handle 400G Ethernet, you could put two 400G Ethernets in it, and so that would be 800G worth of bandwidth. When this electrical interface goes to 100G PAM4 in the next version of our specification, this module will be able to do 1.6 terabytes. 

Is that the endpoint? Probably not, because we've actually designed the module to be able to handle the coherent light, or the 400 ZR, which is being worked on by the OIF. That's a 15 watt part and it does 400G per lambda. If the power of that technology continues to drop, you could potentially put more of those in this and actually achieve even greater bandwidth. 

What about the manufacturability of COBO? How is the industry progressing in this regard? 

Brad Booth, COBO: The interesting aspect of building something like this is being able to dissipate the power and the heat. The biggest thing for heat dissipation is actually the maximum height that you can make the heat fin on the heat sink. So, if you get a full 1RU height, you get significantly better thermal performance than just a small one. We've done some general evaluations here. We’ve actually done some thermal modeling. As a next step, we're looking forward to building out true thermal systems and testing it. 

One of the key aspects of this is that you've got a full 1 RU height. Second, you're not blocking the faceplate with optics, and you don't need as much airflow to pull through the system. That means you don't need fans running full out just to be able to pull enough air through to cool it. Another aspect is that COBO will allow you can to change how you implement your system design. You could place these modules in different spots across the motherboard that are potentially cooler or further away from the hotter ASIC. You could implement airflow channels to cool the optics, separate from the actual switch ASIC. 

There is the possibility of using liquid cooling. This module doesn't have a heat sink on it right now, so you could drop a liquid cooling plate on top of it. There's also the expansion capability provided by extra pins on the bottom of the module, which could be used to provide more power and more control signals if necessary for some next-generation technologies. 

What about the challenge of fiber alignment with COBO?

Brad Booth, COBO: Regarding fiber alignments, an interesting aspect is that we expect most people in the first generation to build these modules with pigtail optics. In other words, the optics will already be pre-attached. This module, which is just a mock-up, is shown without them. 

We have work going on to actually do a connectorized interface. We have some people working on how that would actually be implemented. If we can connectorize it here and connectorized it on the faceplate, that means that you wouldn't have to worry about it at manufacturing. You could attach the module in the factory when they build the switch. They could put the optics right in. Then, after the optics and systems are all installed, you could come and hand fiber, trace it out to the pigtails or to the front faceplate and that would actually help eliminate the worry, if you have to replace this, that you have to unstrand the whole pigtail. This provides the option for people to be able to do both. We’ve discussed even short pigtail versions within our optical conductivity study group. 

We invite people to contribute their thoughts and opinions. Come and work with us on this because this is an area that we think is going to become critically important as we start progressing towards actually putting optics embedded with ASICs. 

http://onboardoptics.org/

See also