Synopsys' New Design Suite Advances Simulation Of Optical Communications For PIC Applications


Synopsys announces the latest release of its RSoft™ Photonic System Design Suite software for the design of PICs and optical communication systems at the signal propagation level.

Version 2017.03 of the Synopsys RSoft Photonic System Design Suite includes new library elements to advance the design and simulation of short-reach optical communications systems and PICs, as well as new modeling features to optimise the design of large-core multimode fibre optic systems used in automotive data links and Ethernet-based data centres.

In the RSoft OptSim™ tool, new discrete multi-tone (DMT) modulation format functions are available in the digital signal processing library to model and simulate DMT-based data links. The DMT format uses light intensity for modulation over multiple subcarriers, which provides high spectral efficiency. It is particularly useful for optimizing the performance of short-reach applications such as automotive data links, access networks as well as 100G and 400G Ethernet-based data centre links.

The RSoft OptSim Circuit tool includes the latest American Institute for Manufacturing Integrated Photonics (AIM Photonics) Process Design Kit (PDK), version 1.0b. The PDK helps PIC designers access leading-edge silicon photonics technology to generate PICs for fabrication through AIM Photonics multi-project wafer facilities. OptSim Circuit users will be able to access the PDK elements, generate schematics and simulate circuit performance prior to exporting net lists for mask generation. In addition, OptSim Circuit includes new and updated libraries for supporting PDAFlow-compatible PDKs for PIC fabrication.


The RSoft ModeSYS™ tool includes new features for the design and analysis of large-core multimode fibre optic systems used in applications ranging from mega data centres to automotive data links:

  1. Support for large-core fibre power-versus-angle signal domain across select models. The feature extends the large-core multimode fibre's numerically efficient power-versus-angle approach for signal propagation to other models in ModeSYS to model a complete data transmission link.
  2. A new large-core connector model that is computationally more efficient than conventional spatial field-profile based connector models.

"In large-core multimode fibre optic systems, alignment between components affects the speed and distance that can be supported by a specific link design," said George Bayz, Vice President and General Manager of Synopsys' Optical Solutions Group. "The new features in ModeSYS allow designers to model fibre component offsets and study performance bounds due to alignment tolerances. Designers of automotive fibre optic data links and backplane Ethernet technologies will find the new ModeSYS features particularly beneficial."

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