4 March 2011

Infinera presents first Terabit photonic integrated circuit

At next week’s Optical Fiber Communication conference (OFC 2011) in Los Angeles, CA (6–10 March), Infinera Corp of Sunnyvale, CA, USA, a vertically integrated manufacturer of digital optical network systems incorporating its own indium phosphide-based photonic integrated circuits (PICs), will present the results of what it claims is the world’s first 1 Terabit/second (Tb/s) PIC, representing another step in the evolution of PIC technology to higher levels of integration and higher data rates.

The talk ‘10 Channel, 100Gbit/s per Channel, Dual Polarization, Coherent QPSK, Monolithic InP Receiver Photonic Integrated Circuit’ on Monday 7 March (3.15pm) by Dr Radhakrishnan Nagarajan, Infinera research fellow and member of the PIC development team, describes the structure and performance of a 1Tb/s PIC receiver. Integrating more than 150 optical devices on a single monolithic indium phosphide (InP) chip, the PIC uses the QPSK modulation format and coherent detection to receive and decode ten channels of 100Gb/s each.

In 2004, Infinera began shipping optical systems based on 100Gb/s PICs. In less than two years, Infinera systems seized first place in the North American long-haul optical networking market, according to data from independent analysts the Dell’Oro Group. Less than a week ago, in partnership with pan-European service provider Interoute, Infinera announced the results of the latest field trial of its next generation of commercial PICs, which deliver 500Gb/s of capacity on a single pair of chips. Optical systems based on the 500Gb/s PICs are planned for commercial availability next year. The 1Tb/s PIC represents another leap forward in the evolution of photonic integration, says Infinera.

“With PICs, Infinera has applied the manufacturing techniques of the silicon industry to optics, and we expect we will be able to ride a long-term curve of more integration, greater functionality, higher data rates, and improved reliability, at the component level, system level, and network level,” says Nagarajan.

With Internet traffic growing at exponential rates (driven by video, cloud computing and mobility), PIC technology will be required to support the growth of network capacity to accommodate this traffic, while reducing the per-bit cost, space, and power consumption, to enable service providers to carry the traffic while maintaining profitable business models, says Infinera. Photonic integration enables greater network reliability because connections between optical components are printed directly onto a chip. From the point of view of network architecture, Terabit PICs could enable the use of ‘superchannels’, or groups of data channels bonded together, to enable more efficient use of network resources and the optical spectrum. At the consumer level, a 1Tb/s PIC could enable the download of one high-definition movie file in a fifth of a second, or support the transmission of 2 million simultaneous videoconferences—all from a single pair of chips, the firm adds.

At OFC, Nagarajan will also present the use of advanced modulation schemes in PICs, in a talk ‘Polarization Multiplexed (D)QPSK InP Receiver Photonic Integrated Circuits’.

In addition, Infinera engineers will be addressing issues in the design and development of next-generation high-capacity systems:

  • co-founder & chief strategy officer Dr David Welch is speaking on Sunday, 6 March (4.30pm) at the workshop ‘Photonic Integration: More Technologies than Applications?’
  • Han Sun and Kuang-Tsan Wu are presentin on Monday 7 March (2.15pm) on ‘A Novel Dispersion and PMD Tolerant Clock Phase Detector for Coherent Transmission Systems’.
  1. co-founder & chief technology officer Drew Perkins is participating in an Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) panel on ‘400G vs 1 Terabit: Market Needs and Technical Challenges’ on Tuesday 8 March (10.30am).


*Also at OFC, Dr Fred Kish, senior VP of the Optical Integrated Circuit Group, will be made an IEEE Fellow for his contributions in the development and commercialization of monolithic large-scale InP PICs and high-efficiency LEDs. Co-founder & chief strategy officer Dr David Welch will receive the 2011 John Tyndall Award from The Optical Society (OSA) and IEEE Photonics Society for “seminal contributions to photonic integrated circuits (PICs) and semiconductor lasers deployed in fiber optic communication systems around the world”. The Tyndall Award is one of the highest honors awarded to individuals in the optical networking industry.

“These awards are recognition of the achievements of the entire Infinera team in developing our groundbreaking large-scale PICs, and we are focused on continuing to innovate and develop new products, technologies and architectures that can help our customers make the network of the future even more powerful, reliable, and economical,” comment Welch.

Tags: Infinera Terabit PICs

Visit: www.infinera.com

Visit: www.ofcnfoec.org

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