Thursday, December 10, 2020

COBO forms Co-Packaged Optics Working Group

The Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) has formed a Co-Packaged Optics (CPO) Working Group to encourage the adoption of co-packaged optics by developing technical guidance and standards for CPO implementations.  

This effort focuses on the optical connectivity and remote laser sources necessary to make co-packaged optics a reality and it is complementary to other co-packaging standardization efforts.  COBO's CPO Working Group is a collaboration of end users and technology suppliers uniquely positioned to address these topics for hyperscale data centers. 

"To support advancements in bandwidth requirements, COBO has advanced to co-packaged optics for enablement of robust fiber optic networks with higher, more reliable, and more efficient throughput," said Tiger Ninomiya, CPO Working Group Chair and COBO Board Member. "Stakeholders involved in co-packaging applications are lending their expertise to advance the industry in a standardized way that meets all anticipated future requirements and to increase adoption with ease in this rapidly expanding market."

"It is critical that the industry develops standards and guidance to enable a robust co-packaging eco-system," said Mark Filer, Principal Engineer, Azure Hardware Architecture at Microsoft.  "COBO is the perfect forum to leverage its membership's expertise to address the optical connectivity challenges for the co-packaging of optics with ASICs."

"COBO has a unique eco-system of member companies which is well suited to address these optical connectivity related challenges," said Jeff Hutchins, Director in the CTO Office at Ranovus and COBO Board Member.  "The working group's efforts will help make the co-packaging of optics a reality."

ONAP marks its 7th release - Guilin - with focus on mobile

The ONAP community announced the 7th ONAP release, codenamed Guilin after the Chinese city of the same name in China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

New features in ONAP Guilin focus on 5G wireless networks and open RAN, along with numerous improvements to the code quality, security, and maturity. 

New use cases include:

  • 5G Network slicing – including the capability of orchestrating network slices in all three domains – RAN, Transport, and Core
  • O-RAN Integration – the ONAP interfaces have been aligned to be compatible with O-RAN Alliance specifications and the O-RAN Software Community modules. Specifically, Guilin adds support for the A1 interface (O-RAN A1-AP v1.1), 
  • Cloud Native Network Functions – Moving in parallel with the evolving architecture of the network functions ONAP orchestrates, the community significantly improved the way ONAP handles Cloud Network Functions (CNFs). It is now more aligned with the way ONAP handles VNFs and PNFs, leading the way to orchestrating hybrid network services using any combination of technologies.

Other enhancements to the ONAP Blueprints includes a new Standard Defined VNF Event Stream (VES) event for Fault Management (FM) / Performance Management (PM) Data Collection, the first use of Machine Learning in Self-Organizing Networks (SON), and greater support for 5G RAN Wireless Network Resource Model (NRM) with Service Modeling and Definition and Intent Based Network supporting intent-drive 5G slice creation. 

Multi-Domain Optical Network Services (MDONS) first introduced in Frankfurt, now supports Inter Domain Link (IDL)/Path Optimization for Optical Transport Network (OTN) links across multiple optical domains. This enables improved policy-driven automated service operations and LCM across cross-carrier optical domains.

Keysight launches 800G test solutions

Keysight Technologies launched new 800G test solutions for validating electrical and optical interfaces to speed development of next generation data center technologies, including the first 100Gbps transmitter and receiver pre-conformance test solution.

Keysight’s new portfolio of electrical and optical analysis solutions enable an 800G ecosystem, consisting of optical components, chipset, switch and semiconductor integrated circuit (IC) vendors, as well as system integrators, to speed design, development, test and validation across the entire design cycle.

New Keysight 800G test solutions include:

100Gbps electrical conformance test

  • The first pre-conformance test solution for validating both transmitter and receiver electrical signaling input interfaces according to the 100Gb/s standard currently under development by IEEE and OIF.
  • Combines Keysight’s Infiniium UXR-Series real-time oscilloscope or digital communication analyzer (DCA), 64 Gbaud high performance bit error rate tester (BERT) and pre-conformance test cases for simplified 100Gbps, 200Gbps, 400Gbps and 800Gbps electrical input interface testing, resulting in accurate and repeatable test results.

Pre-silicon design verification

  • Combines Keysight’s IxVerify software, which generates network traffic, with Synopsys ZeBu Server 4 emulation system to accelerate pre-silicon design verification of system-on-chip (SoC) solutions and 800G Ethernet designs.
  • Delivers consistent test methodologies, configurations and scripts to accelerate testing from pre-silicon to post-silicon device validation.

200Gbps solution for 800G research and pathfinding

  • Combines an arbitrary waveform generator (AWG) and an Infiniium UXR-Series real-time oscilloscope to characterize the digital interface including error detection up to 224Gb/s.
  • Extends testing into the optical domain using Keysight’s 60GHz optical-to-electrical (O/E) converter.

Physical layer test system (PLTS)

  • Establishes signal integrity measurements and performs data post processing of high-speed interconnects, such as cables, backplanes, PCBs and connectors.
  • Supports de-embedding techniques on a common platform, enabling users to optimize performance margins in their 800G channel designs.

“Keysight’s close collaborations across the high-speed industry, as well as with standard organizations such as Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF), enable us to deliver first-to-market solutions that accelerate design cycles and technology waves, well before standards mature,” said Dr. Joachim Peerlings, vice president of network and data center solutions at Keysight Technologies. “Access to a portfolio of 800G test solutions across physical and protocol layers, from simulation to design, validation, conformance and manufacturing, enables our customers to verify interoperability and simplify testing across the workflow using common, uniform interfaces and software automation.”

Deutsche Telekom aligns with Microsoft Azure

Deutsche Telekom and Microsoft announced a seven-year strategic agreement to help customers of all sizes accelerate their cloud transformation initiatives. 

"We have agreed on the framework for joint strategic growth with our long-term partner Microsoft. We are delighted," said Adel Al-Saleh, member of the Deutsche Telekom Board of Management and CEO of T-Systems. "This partnership will enable us to enhance services for our customers. We will also be supporting each other with digitalization and network build-out." 


  • Telekom plans to migrate the majority of its internal IT workloads to the public cloud by 2025 and Azure is a central part of that strategy. Through a companywide training program, thousands of Telekom employees will learn how to maximize the benefits of Azure. 
  • Telekom will also offer its customers direct access to the Microsoft cloud through Azure ExpressRoute. 
  • Telekom will offer Microsoft 365, including Microsoft Teams. As part of this, the companies have started a project for German schools to reimagine traditional approaches to education, enabling remote learning through cloud-based IT infrastructure, modern devices and the cloud productivity and collaboration applications within Microsoft 365. 
  • Telekom will help its customers with moving their SAP environments to Azure. SAP solutions on Azure offer enterprise-grade security, and business continuity and reduce hardware expenses, making it easier for start-ups and smaller organizations to get started. 

“The case for digital transformation has never been more urgent. We know that the next decade of economic performance for every business, whether large or small, will depend on the digital investments made today," said Jean-Philippe Courtois, executive vice president and president, Microsoft Global Sales, Marketing and Operations. “Through this strategic partnership, which combines the power of Deutsche Telekom’s network and Microsoft’s cloud, customers will have more opportunities to become resilient, accelerate innovation and ultimately drive success.”

AWS launches Transit Gateway Connect for SD-WANs

 AWS announced the launch of Transit Gateway Connect, a native way to connect SD-WAN infrastructure with AWS without having to set up IPsec VPNs between SD-WAN network virtual appliances and Transit Gateway. 

Transit Gateway Connect is a new attachment type that supports Generic Routing Encapsulation (GRE) for higher bandwidth performance compared to a VPN connection. Transit Gateway Connect supports Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) for dynamic routing, and removes the need to configure static routes. This simplifies network design and reduces the associated operational costs. In addition, integration with Transit Gateway Network Manager provides advanced visibility through global network topology, attachment level performance metrics, and telemetry data.

AWS Transit Gateway Connect integrates with a number of industry-leading partners, including:

  • 128 Technology
  • Alkira
  • Arista Networks
  • Aruba
  • Aryaka
  • Aviatrix
  • Cisco Systems
  • Citrix
  • Fortinet
  • Palo Alto Networks (CloudGenix, VM-Series Virtual Firewall)
  • Silver Peak
  • Sophos
  • Versa Networks

Verizon and Corning launch commercial indoor 5G

Verizon Business and Corning have begun commercial installations of 5G in-building cell sites for enterprise customers.

Initial deployments are happening in Verizon retail store locations to provide the fastest 5G Ultra Wideband experience. WeWork has also chosen Verizon Business to provide Corning’s indoor 5G cells, with ten WeWork locations across the US set to receive installations. 

Corning’s indoor cell site is designed to provide Verizon’s 5G mmWave service inside facilities such as hospitals, manufacturing facilities, warehouses, schools, ports, commercial office space, retail stores and any indoor environment where large amounts of data traffic must be managed and optimized. The launch of these indoor cell sites will not only extend the footprint of Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband network, but will also bring the promise of private networks with Mobile Edge Compute (MEC) capabilities one step closer. 

Ciena posts Q4 revenus of $828.5 million

 Ciena posted revenue of $828.5 million for its fiscal fourth quarter ended October 31, 2020, down from $968.0 million for the fiscal fourth quarter 2019. For fiscal year 2020, Ciena reported revenue of $3.53 billion, as compared to $3.57 billion for fiscal year 2019. 

Q4 net income per share was $0.42 GAAP; $0.60 adjusted (non-GAAP), increasing 3.4% year over year.

"Our fiscal fourth quarter and full-year 2020 performance reported today demonstrates that we have the innovation, diversification and global scale to perform well in a challenging environment," said Gary Smith, President and CEO, Ciena. "While we expect current market conditions to persist in the near-term, we are confident in strong secular demand dynamics and our ability to continue to outperform the market."

Some notes:
  • No customer represented more than 10% of revenue for the fiscal quarter 
  • One 10%-plus customer represented a total of 10.6% of revenue for the fiscal year 
  • Cash and investments totaled $1.3 billion 
  • Headcount totaled 7,032

FCC adopts rules to secure communications

The FCC adopted rules to implement the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019, aimed at protecting the security of the United States and the safety of U.S. communications networks.  

Specifically, the Second Report and Order approved today requires the Commission to publish a list of communications equipment and services determined to be a risk to national security that has been identified either by (1) executive branch interagency bodies with appropriate national security experience; (2) the Department of Commerce pursuant to its authority under Executive Order 13873; (3) Congress in the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, or (4) U.S. national security agencies.  Once Congress appropriates funding, eligible telecommunications carriers that receive universal service funding to provide service in remote areas of the country must remove such equipment or services from their networks and properly dispose of it.  

The Order also establishes and adopts rules for the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Reimbursement Program, which will provide funds to smaller providers of advanced communications services for the removal and replacement of communications equipment and services on the list published by the Commission, conditioned on the appropriation of funds by Congress.  Commission staff have estimated the program will require at least $1.6 billion to reimburse eligible providers, based on an analysis conducted by the Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau and Office of Economics and Analytics.  

The Order further requires all providers of advanced communications services to report whether their networks include any covered communications equipment or services acquired after August 14, 2018.  Finally, the Order mandates strict reporting requirements to ensure that the Commission is kept informed about the ongoing presence of insecure equipment in U.S. communications networks.

In addition, the FCC voted to deny Huawei Technologies Co.’s application for review of a June 30, 2020 order designating the company, as well as its parents, affiliates, and subsidiaries, as posing a national security threat to the safety of communications networks and the communications supply chain. In the June order, the Commission’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau formally designated Huawei as a covered company for purposes of the agency’s November 2019 ban on the use of support from the Commission’s Universal Service Fund to purchase equipment or services from companies posing a national security threat.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Inphi launches 7nm 50G PAM4 DSP

Inphi announced its Polaris Gen2 PAM4 platform, the industry’s first 50G, 28Gbaud PAM4 DSP solution based on low-power 7nm CMOS technology. 

The Polaris platform is the industry’s leading 28GBaud PAM4 DSP solution offering integrated driver options for EML and Silicon Photonics to address a broad range of optical interconnects scaling from 50G to 400G. The Polaris Gen2 PAM4 platform supports 400G optical transceiver modules in both QSFP-DD and OSFP form factors and 200G modules in the QSFP56 package, in line with the optical PMD’s specified in the IEEE standards.

Polaris Gen2 PAM4 DSP Key Features:

  • Field-proven PAM4 DSPs qualified in multiple hyperscale cloud data centers
  • Developed in 7 nm CMOS process technology
  • Supports short-reach multi-mode <100m and long-reach SMF 500m-40km optical interconnects
  • Supports 50G PAM4, 50Gbps breakout and 25G NRZ transmission
  • Integrates EML and Silicon Photonics linear drivers

Polaris Linear Drivers:

The Inphi IN2814DV is a 28GBaud low power quad VCSEL linear driver for PAM4 optical modules or Active Optical Cables. The IN2814DV is optimized for routing with a channel pitch aligned to the VCSEL optics driving over Multi-Mode Fiber MMF.

The Inphi IN2821SD is a 28GBaud low power single channel DML linear driver for PAM4 optical modules. The IN2821SD is optimized to direct drive commercial DMLs for excellent PAM4 optical performance.

Polaris Linear TIA’s:

The Inphi IN2864TA TIA is a 28GBaud low power quad linear TIA for PAM4 optical modules. It features a wide dynamic range to meet the different performance and link requirements for optical applications and excellent signal integrity necessary for PAM4 modulation schemes.

The Inphi IN2865TA is a 28GBaud low power quad VCSEL linear TIA for PAM4 optical modules or AOCs. The IN2865TA is optimized for direct routing with a channel pitch aligned to the MMF optics.

“As a pioneer of PAM4 technology for high-speed interconnects, Inphi is again breaking new ground and continuing to lead the industry with a highly integrated next generation DSP platform based on 7nm CMOS process technology,” said Eric Hayes, Sr. VP, Networking Interconnect at Inphi. “Leveraging our experience achieved over the past years hardening our successful 16nm Polaris PAM4 DSP, TIA and driver solutions in high volume deployment, we’ve introduced the new Polaris Gen2 family to fulfill the strong market demand for 50G data center low power interconnects.”

Inphi samples 100G PAM4 DSP

Inphi introduced its new Alcor PAM4 DSP platform to accelerate the industry’s transition from 25G to 100G per wavelength. 

The new Alcor platform, which is based on Inphi’s Porrima PAM4 DSP platform, includes Inphi’s PAM4 DSP technology, Linear TIA and Driver to provide even higher levels of integration and lower power for high-performance hyperscale data center, cloud computing and emerging AI applications. It offers an enhanced feature set with integrated 56Gbaud laser drivers that enable less than 3.5W QSFP28, DSFP and SFP-DD optical modules. The new PAM4 DSP also offers integrated driver options to address a broad range of implementations for optical interconnects.

Alcor 100G PAM4 DSP Key Features:

  • Low power consumption enables less than 3.5W 100G, 2x50G or 4x25G optical modules
  • Integrated 56Gbaud laser drivers with direct-drive capability reduces module BOM cost
  • Integrated oscillator minimizes BOM cost
  • Advanced telemetry and diagnostics improve link performance and health monitoring
  • Seamless firmware transition with compatible API software suite accelerates time to market

IN566x Linear TIA:

The IN5661TA is a 56GBaud low-power single/quad linear TIA for PAM4 optical modules used in data centers. Key features include:

  • Wide dynamic range to meet varying performance and link requirements for optical applications
  • Adjustable gain to optimize PAM4 system performance
  • Excellent signal integrity necessary for PAM4 modulation schemes
  • Low power and small form factor design

“Inphi’s execution and delivery of the Alcor PAM4 DSP with integrated driver, furthers our market leadership position, addressing an ever growing SAM, as NRZ based solutions accelerate migration to PAM4,” said Eric Hayes, senior VP, Networking Interconnect at Inphi. “The integration, low power, and advanced telemetry of Alcor will accelerate creation and adoption of PAM4 based 100G DR optical modules, continuing to grow Inphi’s already vast ecosystem to even more partners.”

100G Lambda MSA completes specs for longer reach 100 GbE over SMF

The 100G Lambda Multisource Agreement (MSA) Group released three enhanced 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) specifications, extending the reach to three distinct lengths of up to 20, 30 and 40 km over single-mode fiber. These specifications are based on 100 Gbps per wavelength PAM4 optical technology that the MSA was founded on and has been promoting. 

The specs address 100G-LR1-20 for 20 km reach, and 100G-ER1-30 and 100G-ER1-40 for 30 and 40 km reaches, respectively. 

“Single-wavelength 100G PAM4 optical technology has gained industry-wide adoption”, said Mark Nowell, 100G Lambda MSA co-chair. “These longer reach specifications will further accelerate broader industry acceptance of single-wavelength 100G solutions, especially for service providers and carriers who are in high demand of efficient and cost-effective optical solutions for next-generation wireline and wireless networks.”

“The MSA has its mission to promote 100G per wavelength PAM4 technology as part of optical networking roadmap”, said Jeffery Maki, 100G Lambda MSA co-chair. “These new specifications support roadmap evolution for extended reaches of up to 40km for today’s implementations and ready to migrate to higher electrical lane speed, smaller form factors, and lower power dissipation.”

The 100G Lambda MSA Group member companies are: II-VI, Alibaba, Applied OptoElectronics, Arista Networks, Broadcom, Cambridge Industries Group, China Unicom, Ciena, Cisco Systems, Color Chip, Credo, Delta, Eoptolink, Fujitsu Optical Components, HG Genuine, HiSense, HiSilicon, Innolight, Inphi, Intel, Juniper Networks, Keysight Technologies, Lightwave Logic, Lumentum, MACOM, Maxim, Maxlinear, Mellanox, Microsoft, Mitsubishi Electric, Molex, MultiLane, Neophotonics, Nokia, Panduit, Renesas, Rockley Photonics, Semtech, Sicoya, SiFotonics Technologies, Source Photonics, Sumitomo Electric, TE Connectivity, TFC Optical Communication, Tektronix and ZTE.

100G Lambda MSA completes 400G spec for 2~10 km

The 100G Lambda Multisource Agreement (MSA) Group released a 400 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) specification up to 10 km based on 100 Gbps per wavelength PAM4 optical technology. 

The new 400GbE specification is designated as 400G-LR4-10 for duplex single-mode links up to 10 km and relies on multiplexing 4 wavelengths of 100 Gb/s PAM4 modulated optical signals.

The MSA members developed the 400GbE specification to fully address market requirements for 2 km to 10 km reaches over duplex single-mode for both 100GbE and 400GbE. The MSA believes that the 10 km reach specification will be fully interoperable with the 6 km version being developed by another industry standards group. The nomenclature use of “-10” in 400G-LR4-10 will inform users of the target reach.

Acacia's 400G pluggable coherent wins ECOC award

Acacia’s family of 400G pluggable coherent solutions have won the optical integration (Silicon Photonics) category of the first-ever ECOC Exhibition Industry awards.

Utilizing Acacia’s 3D siliconization technology, Acacia’s 400G pluggable module family features an expansive list of interoperability solutions (400ZR, OpenZR+, Open ROADM MSA and CableLabs Coherent Optics Physical Layer Specification) in QSFP-DD, OSFP and CFP2-DCO pluggable form factors for cloud data center (DCI) interconnects and service provider networks. Acacia’s 400G pluggable coherent solutions were designed to enable network operators to address increasing bandwidth demand through a simplified network architecture, to help reduce both capital and operational expenditures.

Acacia samples 400ZR, OpenZR+, Open ROADM MSA

Acacia Communications has begun sampling multiple variants in its family of 400G pluggable optical transceiver modules, including 400ZR, OpenZR+, and Open ROADM MSA. Volume production is expected in the second half of 2020.

Acacia’s 400G pluggable module family features an expansive list of interoperability solutions in QSFP-DD, OSFP and CFP2-DCO pluggable form factors for cloud data center interconnects (DCIs) and service provider networks. The modules are based on Acacia's Greylock 7nm DSP, its 3rd generation of coherent DSP. The company is pursuing a 3D Siliconization approach that allows for high volume manufacturing processes.

OpenZR represents the combination of 400ZR and the Open ROADM MSA. It targets metro regional DCI applications.

Acacia said 400G pluggable modules represent a key architectural change in high-bandwidth data center interconnects because they can be plugged directly into switches and routers offering the same density for both coherent DWDM and client optics in the same chassis.

II‐VI's pluggable optical line subsystem wins ECOC 2020 award

II‐VI's pluggable optical line subsystem (POLS) platform has won the ECOC 2020 Industry Award in the Data Center Innovation/Best Product category.

II-VI’s POLS platform, which was initially announced in March 2020, plugs directly into a datacenter interconnect (DCI) switch port and enables full-duplex multichannel 400ZR transport, including multiplexing, demultiplexing, and variable-gain amplification. The first product on the POLS platform, the OSFP-LS, supports up to 8 DWDM wavelengths, or 3.2 Tbps per fiber pair. The OSFP-LS, a disaggregated subsystem, can be incorporated into both branded OEM and white box solutions.

Gluware advances intent-based network automation with SaaS model

Gluware announced major enhancements to its cloud-delivered intent-based network automation platform, including a new SaaS model with a free pricing tier for network discovery and inventory management.

Gluware automates multi-vendor, multi-domain networks with an abstraction layer that provides device management, configuration audit/drift, policy management, etc.

Gluware 4.0 introduces a number of new core capabilities and user benefits, including:

  • Expanded Network Vendor Support – Support for Aruba AOS-CX, AOS-Switch and ProVision; and Juniper Networks’ Junos OS for the EX, MX, QFX and SRX platforms help customers manage complex network configurations and deliver change at scale with the confidence of declarative automation.
  • Multi-Cloud Network Automation – Integration with Terraform enables users to automate the configuration of public cloud infrastructure including Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud.
  • EVPN-VXLAN Multi-vendor Reference Design Package – Config modeling application enables simple automation of advanced architecture with standards-based leaf-routed/ERB and Juniper spine-routed/CRB support.
  • Gluware Dashboard – User-definable dashboards help customers quickly assimilate critical information in an actionable and fully integrated new design.
  • Config Search – Search functionality across any or all device configurations aids in troubleshooting, building audits and automating network features.
  • Ad-Hoc Query – The automated checking of each device configuration or state saves time when troubleshooting and performing assessments.
  • Syslog Integration – Real-time multi-vendor change notifications enhance the management of increasingly frequent network changes.
  • Enhanced OS Manager Engine – Expanded OS Manager capabilities improve the ability to successfully execute OS upgrades in complex deployments.
  • Cisco License Inventory Report – Automatic network audits for Cisco licensing and smart licensing enable customers to perform their own audits to save time and money.
  • Enhanced Audit Capabilities – Finer control of audit rules can help validate individual configurations independently, verify when order matters, and group commands into a single set, expanding audit use-cases and simplifying results.

As for the new SaaS model, Gluware 4.0 introduces two offerings:

  • Gluware Pro is a cloud-delivered SaaS automation application suite powered by the Gluware Secure Gateway to achieve security and rapid onboarding in an easy to consume subscription model including a free-tier for network discovery and inventory. The Gluware Secure Gateway provides an onramp to Gluware running in AWS, encrypting the control messages from the cloud and performs multi-engine provisioning activities to each network device. Gluware Pro is packaged for up to 2,000 devices per customer.
  • Gluware Enterprise, a robust application suite, is optimized for the largest and most complex enterprises, automating global networks with distributed Gluware Zone Engines in geographic or logical groups for high scalability and security. Gluware Zone Engines enable customers to distribute multiple Gluware provisioning engines in strategic geographical locations to achieve the scale and performance required for tens of thousands of devices per enterprise. Gluware Enterprise is customizable with multiple deployment options including on-premises, customer cloud (AWS or Azure), Azure Marketplace delivered or Gluware hosted on AWS.

“The networking demands of the enterprise are changing drastically as digital transformation and remote work adoption accelerate alongside the pandemic. Cloud-enabled network automation is a vital lifeline to those in I&O roles who need to mitigate the complexity of rapidly evolving enterprise networks,” said Jeff Gray, CEO and Co-founder, Gluware. “Gluware 4.0 is the industry’s first cloud-delivered intelligent automation platform for multi-domain, multi-vendor and multi-cloud networks that combines the intelligence, security and feature sets to transform enterprise networks from manually built and maintained, to fully automated and secure, so complexity is never an issue.”

Vector Photonics announces 1310nm/25G PCSEL chip

Vector Photonics, a spin-out from the University of Glasgow, is showcasing the development of its PCSEL-based, 1310nm / 25G chip at the virtual ECOC exhibition.

The semiconductor laser is based on PCSEL (Photonic Crystal Surface Emitting Lasers) technology.

Vector Photonics CEO, Neil Martin, said, “ECOC is Europe’s largest exhibition of fibre optic communications and photonics-related technologies. This makes it the ideal platform from which to announce our 1310nm / 25G PCSEL chip development and to state our intention to target datacentre applications as a priority. The datacentre market is rapidly growing, driven by the increasing use and demand for mobile devices, Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G. It is also a market where we can validate our technology against the IEEE 802.3 standard for datacoms chips, selling them through multiple, global, sales channels once successful.”

The data centre PCSEL project, known as LOCAL, has received a £280k, Innovate UK, Sustainable Innovation Fund government grant, in collaboration with the University of Glasgow.

Vector Photonics develops a new class of semiconductor lasers

Vector Photonics, a spin-out from the University of Glasgow, announced plans to commercialize a new class of Photonic Crystal Surface Emitting Lasers (PCSEL) technology for hyperscale data center applications. The technology uses a 2D grating structure to scatter light linearly and orthogonally.

Vector Photonics CEO, Neil Martin, said, “PCSELs are low cost, robust, have a broad wavelength range and high power. This combination of key characteristics gives them a huge advantage over most of the laser technologies used today. This includes VCSELs (Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers), which are robust, but compromise wavelength range and power, and EEL’s (Edge Emitting Lasers), which have broad wavelength range, but are expensive to make and are fragile to handle.

“PCSELs emit light from their top surface, like VCSELs, making them easy to package and incorporate into PCBs and electronic assemblies. They are also produced in a similar way to EELs, allowing us to draw on existing supply chain expertise and capacity as we grow.”

ADVA and Advantech Open Remote Lab to Streamline uCPE Adoption

ADVA and Advantech launched a joint test-drive portal based on the ADVA Ensemble suite and Advantech edge appliances for remote evaluation of SD-WAN and security solutions on Universal CPE. 

The portal aims to streamline the evaluation process for network engineers and architects working remotely by providing them with free access to a wide range of pre-integrated SD-WAN uCPE platforms. 

The new uCPE test-drive portal is built on the ADVA Ensemble open virtualization suite, including carrier-class management and orchestration, and virtual network functions hosting capabilities. Lab users will be provided access to Advantech FWA-1112VC edge appliances hosting the ADVA Ensemble software and will be able to test Fortinet’s Secure SD-WAN solution that enables a Security-Driven Networking approach and the Silver Peak Unity EdgeConnect SD-WAN edge platform that provides automated integration with cloud-delivered security services. The Advantech FWA-1112VC platform features Intel Atom processors that have been cost optimized for volume deployment and provide flexible connectivity options including 5G, Wi-Fi 6 and 10 GbE. Encryption and compression acceleration improvements can be assessed using Intel QuickAssist with DPDK. Other partner virtual network functions and Advantech hardware platforms are available for evaluation under request.

Dell'Oro: Strong demand for 25 Gbps Ethernet adapters

Strong demand for 25 Gbps Ethernet adapters propelled the market to the highest revenue of $638 million in 3Q 2020, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. Nvidia gained share on a one-time sale of Ethernet controllers and adapters sufficient to satisfy the multi-year demand of a Chinese OEM, presumed to be Huawei, ahead of its sourcing ban from US vendors.

“More than 3.3 million of 25 Gbps Ethernet controllers and adapters ports were shipped in 3Q20, surpassing the previous record set in the prior quarter, with strong demand from Tier 1 China-based Cloud SPs and Tier 1 server OEMs as they embraced the technology,” said Baron Fung, Research Director at Dell’Oro Group. “However, shipments of 50 Gbps Ethernet controller and adapter ports declined from the prior quarter as some of the Tier 1 Cloud service providers have entered a digestion cycle and reduced server deployments,” added Fung.

Additional highlights from the 3Q 2020 Ethernet Controller and Adapter report include:

  • Total Ethernet controller and adapter port shipments increased 8 percent quarter-over-quarter.
  • Shipments of 100 Gbps ports grew quarter-over-quarter to 425 K ports, an all-time-high, to support the growing demands of accelerated computing.
  • Amazon commanded 73 percent revenue share of the Smart NIC market in 3Q 2020. Broadcom led the Ethernet adapter vendors in port shipments, followed by Marvell and Nvidia.

Dell'Oro: Campus switch revenue returned to growth in Q3

Worldwide campus switch revenue recovered after two consecutive quarters of high single-digit decline, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. Huawei, HPE, H3C, and Arista Networks drove most of the growth in 3Q 2020 and comprised more than 28 percent of the market sales, up nearly three percentage points year-over-year (Y/Y).

Additional highlights from the 3Q 2020 Ethernet Switch – Campus Report:

The revenue recovery was broad-based across all major regions: North America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific, with the majority of the growth driven by North America.

5/5.0 Gbps port shipments were up 60 percent Y/Y, surpassing 1.5 M ports during the quarter as the pandemic is accelerating the adoption of higher speeds and new technologies.

“Government funding around the world and particularly in North America propelled growth in the market,” said Sameh Boujelbene, Senior Research Director at Dell’Oro Group. “Additionally, the market benefited from backlog fulfillment during the quarter as supply challenges improved from the first half of the year. While government funding may have benefited mostly the public sector and lower education verticals, we have started to see some signs of recovery in large and even some mid-size enterprises as they resumed spending on campus network upgrades,” added Boujelbene.

IDC: Worldwide server market revenue up 2.2% in Q3

Vendor revenue in the worldwide server market grew 2.2% year over year to $22.6 billion during the third quarter of 2020 (3Q20), according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker. Worldwide server shipments declined 0.2% year over year to nearly 3.1 million units in 3Q20.

Volume server revenue was up 5.8% to $19.0 billion, while midrange server revenue declined 13.9% to $2.6 billion, and high-end servers declined by 12.6% to $937 million.

"Global demand for enterprise servers was a bit muted during the third quarter of 2020 although we did see areas of strong demand," said Paul Maguranis, senior research analyst, Infrastructure Platforms and Technologies at IDC. "From a regional perspective, server revenue within China grew 14.2% year over year. And worldwide revenues for servers running AMD CPUs were up 112.4% year over year while ARM-based servers grew revenues 430.5% year over year, albeit on a very small base of revenue."

  • Dell Technologies and HPE/New H3C Group were tied for the top position in the 3Q20 worldwide server market with 16.7% and 15.9% revenue share respectively. 
  • Inspur/Inspur Power Systems finished third with a 9.4% share of revenue. 
  • Lenovo was fourth with a 5.9% share and Huawei was fifth with a 4.9% share. 
  • The ODM Direct group of vendors accounted for 28.0% of total server revenue, up 8.4% year over year.

Nutanix names Rajiv Ramaswami as CEO

Nutanix named Rajiv Ramaswami as President and Chief Executive Officer, replacing co-founder Dheeraj Pandey, who previously announced his plans to retire as CEO of Nutanix upon the appointment of a successor.

Ramaswami most recently served as Chief Operating Officer of Products and Cloud Services at VMware. Prior to this role, Ramaswami led VMware’s Networking and Security business, one of the fastest-growing units in the company, as Executive Vice President and General Manager. Before joining VMware, Ramaswami served as Executive Vice President and General Manager, Infrastructure and Networking at Broadcom. 

“I’m thrilled to be joining Nutanix at this transformative time for the company and the industry,” said Ramaswami. “I have long admired Nutanix as a formidable competitor, a pioneer in hyperconverged infrastructure solutions and a leader in cloud software. Working closely with the Board, the management team, and the more than 6,000 talented Nutanix employees around the world, we will build on Nutanix’s strong foundation of continuous innovation, collaboration and customer delight. Together, we will capitalize on the significant opportunities ahead and deliver on the company’s next phase of growth and value creation.”