Molex Demonstrates 100 Gbps Integrated Optical Transceiver Products

November 9, 2011. Molex Inc. announced it has demonstrated what it calls the industry’s first single chip CMOS photonics-based 100 Gbps optical interconnect to support next-generation cloud computing and high-performance-computing connectivity. In a collaborative partnership with Luxtera, the new Molex silicon photonics-based active optical devices comprise four 28-Gbps transmit and receive channels powered from a single laser for an aggregate data rate of more than 100 Gbps. Molex CMOS photonics-based connectivity products are an outcome of ongoing development and collaboration structured during the Molex acquisition of Luxtera’s Active Optical Cable product line.

“Our strategic collaboration with Luxtera has yielded significant benefits and made it possible to blend scalability and high reliability, regardless of speed or channel count,” states Tom Marrapode, director of marketing, fiber optic products, Molex. “In working closely with system architects, signal integrity engineers and hardware designers to solve the many challenges of 25 Gbps+ I/O within and across customers’ next generation systems, we have reaffirmed the value CMOS photonics-based interconnect devices can deliver.”

Molex packaged silicon photonics-based products are targeted for 100 Gbps Ethernet, Optical Transport Network (OTN), and InfiniBand applications, in addition to emerging Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) Short Reach and Very Short Reach electrical interconnect to host systems. The 100-Gbps integrated optical transceiver product offerings will include direct board-mounted solutions and complete end-to-end interconnect systems, which will join an extensive portfolio of Molex high-speed backplane interconnect and zQSFP+ active optical cables, electrical connectors and cages.

“The elusive promise of silicon photonics is finally being realized as Molex continues to ship volume of silicon photonic-based active optical cables, recognized widely for their best in class power consumption, performance and reliability,” states Marek Tlalka, director of marketing, Luxtera. “Due to the fundamental advantages and performance headroom offered by silicon photonics, scaling to 100 Gbps and beyond on a single piece of silicon is a straightforward migration. We plan to drive aggressively to terabit and multi-terabit single chip connectivity and are excited by the opportunities ahead for this partnership.”

Molex and Luxtera are sampling evaluation platforms to strategic partners and lead customers.

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