By Lisa Huff
As always, the top transceiver manufacturers were represented at OFC, but of the top three datacom transceiver providers, Avago Technologies stood out to me. They had two significant demonstrations:
1. Connecting a 40GBASE-SR4 Ethernet port using its QSFP+ to four standard 10GBASE-SR Ethernet ports with its SFP+ modules. On the surface, this seems pretty easy to do, until you realize that the specifications for the transmitters and receivers in these devices have are very different. The 10G devices could easily overpower the 40G receiver if it’s not designed to handle the higher power. Avago has solved this issue with its parts and hopes to be able to be interoperable with anyone’s transceivers in the near future.
2. A VCSEL-based 25G short-wavelength SFP+ working prototype. At first I was puzzled about this because I couldn’t figure out the application. Well, it turns out there really is none for the 25G part, yet, but showing that it could be done makes you realize that 32G Fibre Channel applications using the SFP+ may not be as far-fetched as we think. And, perhaps we can get a 100GBASE-SR4 (4x25G that isn't in the IEEE standard yet) solution soon.
Stay tuned for more on other developments announced or demonstrated at OFC/NFOEC.