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Infinera announces new line of 1.6T optics for intra-datacentre connectivity

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The company says its new ICE-D line, which it will be showcasing at OFC 2024, reduces power per bit by up to 75 percent while also increasing connectivity speed

Infinera has announced ICE-D, a new line of high-speed intra-datacentre optics based on monolithic indium phosphide (InP) PIC technology. ICE-D optics are designed to dramatically lower cost and power per bit while providing intra-datacentre connectivity at speeds of 1.6T per second and greater.

According to industry analysts at Cignal AI, market demand for high-speed (800G+), intermediate-reach (100+ m) intra-datacentre interconnect technology is projected to grow nearly tenfold over the next four years – from about 300,000 units in 2023 to more than 2.5 million units by 2027, with a total market opportunity of greater than $2.2 billion.

“Intra-datacentre bandwidth is growing at an unprecedented rate as artificial intelligence applications transform connectivity demands between processing devices,” said Scott Wilkinson, lead analyst, Networking Components at Cignal AI. “This global trend will require innovative high-speed, low-latency, and power-efficient solutions to enable datacentre operators to economically meet the challenge of scaling intra-datacentre connectivity – today and well into the future.”

Infinera says its intra-datacentre optical connectivity technology leverages the unique capabilities of its US-based optical semiconductor fab, enabling highly integrated solutions that combine multiple optical functions onto a single monolithic chip, resulting in industry-leading density, low latency, and power efficiency. According to Infinera, its ICE-D test chips, which are currently available, have demonstrated a reduction in power per bit by as much as 75 percent while simultaneously increasing connectivity speed.

“Infinera is excited to apply our 20+ years of pioneering innovation in optical connectivity solutions to solve the challenge of economically scaling intra-datacentre connectivity to support the deluge of bandwidth stemming from AI applications,” said Ron Johnson, SVP and GM of Optical Systems and Global Engineering at Infinera. “Our unique monolithic InP PIC technology puts us in an ideal position to develop innovative technologies to provide cost- and power-efficient, high-capacity intra-datacentre connectivity solutions.”

Infinera’s flexible ICE-D intra-datacentre optics are designed to support integration into a variety of different intra- and campus datacentre optical solutions. These solutions include digital signal processor (DSP)-based retimed optics, linear-drive pluggable optics (LPO), and co-packaged optics (CPO) for both serial and parallel fibre applications and distances ranging from 100 m up to 10 km. Infinera will showcase its ICE-D intra-datacentre optics and portfolio of open optical networking solutions at OFC 2024.

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