A 25.6-Tbps OptoASIC Switch System Demonstrator

Rockley Photonics, a developer and supplier of integrated photonic solutions with offices in Pasadena, San Jose, Oxford, and Helsinki, is demonstrating its in-package-optics platform to select customers and development partners since March 10th. Rockley has collaborated with Accton, Molex, TE Connectivity and other leading industry partners to develop this 25.6T OptoASIC switch system co-packaged with Rockley’s LightDriver optical engine and copper cable attached 400G modules.

Some of the features and benefits of this platform are that the LightDriver engine drives down overall cost and power dissipation, features six terabit performance, scalable to 51.2T and higher, and sports an external laser light source in front panel pluggable QSFP-DD modules.

Rockley’s optical engine has been developed using the company’s uniquely differentiated silicon photonics platform enabling 3D integration of electronic and photonic components. It delivers 40% savings in power and 60% savings in cost vis-à-vis transceiver-based optics. The LightDriver technology is scalable from 0.8T to 3.2T allowing Rockley to address system solutions from 25.6T to 51.2T using 100G PAM4 signaling.

“We are very pleased to have partnered with such a strong team in the hyper scale data center connectivity space to bring about this solution,” said Andrew Rickman, chief executive, Rockley Photonics. “For co-packaged optics to become a reality it will take a strong and collaborative ecosystem. The partnership demonstrated by Rockley, Accton, Molex and TE we believe is a significant stepping stone towards delivering high performance and cost effective optics for hyper scale data center connectivity.”

Accton is a leading company that has a highly qualified global workforce producing leading-edge products that are affordable and reliable. As a leader in the design of open hardware platforms for data centers, Accton has cooperated with key leading companies to demonstrate the 25.6T co-packaged OptoASIC switch system to be shown at OFC2020. Not only does the switch system integrate an 800G optical engine via TE’s fine pitch CP socket technology, but it is also compliant with conventional 400G FR4 QSFP-DD modules through electrical pluggable interfaces. The switch system incorporates Molex’s BiPass/TGA and Samtec’s Si-Fly copper solutions.

Accton has integrated the MAC ASIC, optical engine, and copper connectors within a Kyocera substrate, which is connected by an XLA socket from TE Connectivity. Additionally, the demonstration switch platform introduces Vicor’s vertical power GCM device.

The Accton team are actively engaged in the development challenges of co-packaged optical systems to produce products that are robust and reliable. “The level of openness, engagement and collaboration with our key customers and partners has encouraged us to address new challenges in system design, technical readiness, standardization, manufacturing, reliability, and supply chain. We are shifting the paradigm to ‘Think Inside the Box’,” says Michael Lane, Accton’s VP of research and new technology.

Molex LLC has developed an industry leading BiPass technology, leveraging our TGA (Twinax Grid Array) copper interconnect system to enable 112G per lane. This technology closely coupled with its optical connectivity and FlexPlane optical circuits provides our hyperscale customers confidence in Molex’s ability to satisfy full system optimization. The benefits of such solutions range from thermal advantages, SI advancements, and operational excellence. “Molex is excited to team up with Accton, Rockley Photonics, and TE Connectivity in support of our TGA BiPass technology, Optical interconnect solutions, and QSFP-DD high speed I/O products in order to provide the industry with a collaborative solution that provides significant value to this ever changing ecosystem,” says Ryan Wade, Molex director of sales – Hyperscale. “As we prepare for the future, hardware innovation will continue to be dynamic. The need for collaboration and key partnerships will be a must in order to successfully implement and deploy such solutions. We have accomplished this first phase of collaboration and are excited for future efforts in order to bring this to market.”

TE Connectivity has combined its CP fine pitch socket/interposer technology with its thermal bridge product to integrate into Rockley’s LDx optical engine to result in a miniature, manufacturing-friendly sub-assembly with excellent signal integrity and reliable high-performance thermal management.

The LDx optical engine is integrated into Accton’s OptoASIC switch system using TE’s versatile and high performance proven XLA socket product to provide a separable interface between the high value optics-switch assembly and the entire switch enclosure. “TE is pleased to work cooperatively with Rockley to combine our CP fine pitch socket solution along with our thermal bridge technology to enable high performance signal integrity while simultaneously ensuring the necessary thermal management,” according to TE’s Chris Blackburn, technologist on the TE’s system architecture team. “Such a highly integrated, high performance assembly requires a unique combination of innovative TE technologies which have been developed for next generation higher density applications such as co-packaging.” (Source: Rockley Photonics)

Link: Driving the next generation of silicon photonics, Rockley Photonics Ltd., Pasadena, CA, USA

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