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ClariPhy targets 400G with new 16-nm DSP silicon
Author Stephen Hardy Editorial Director and Associate Publisher

Communications system on a chip (SoC) supplier ClariPhy says it is demonstrating the third generation of its LightSpeed coherent DSP SoC. The 16-nm CMOS device will support multiple optical transmission rates and modulation formats, including 400 Gbps via 64QAM.

The four-channel analog-to-digital converter/digital-to-analog converter (ADC/DAC) LightSpeed-III platform will help enable 70 Tbps per fiber (via a combination of C-Band and L-Band transmission) and more than 50% power reduction, the company asserts.

ClariPhy will demonstrate the device as part of a reference design at OFC 2016 in Anaheim, CA, March 22-24. The company has assembled Fujitsu Optical Components (FOC), Inphi, MACOM, and NeoPhotonics as ecosystem partners for the reference design to supply such contributing technologies as drivers, modulators, optical receivers, and optical transmitters.

According to Paul Voois, co-founder and chief strategy officer at ClariPhy, the SoC should be ready for sampling at some point next year. He did not provide product details, other than that there will be multiple devices in the family. It seems likely these SoCs will be optimized for different applications, such as submarine, metro, terrestrial long haul, etc.

Meanwhile, ClariPhy also will demonstrate the performance of its current LightSpeed-II SoC, which targets the new generation of 100G and 200G metro transceivers, particularly the CFP2-ACO. The company will show the Lightspeed-II working with optical transceivers from ecosystem partners Finisar, FOC, and Oclaro. Each transceiver vendor will contribute an optical module to the demonstration.

Voois says that his company is shipping the LightSpeed-II in small volumes for pairing with the CFP2-ACOs because the transceivers have only recently become available; other applications have driven larger shipments. He says that that the company has won design slots that would combine two SoCs to support 400-Gbps optical transmissions as well.

The LightSpeed-II achieved a perfect 5.0 rating in this year's Lightwave Innovation Reviews program.

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