Wednesday, October 4, 2023

MEF sets sights on Network-as-a-Service

MEF published a Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) Industry Blueprint designed to help service providers develop, market, and deliver the next generation of NaaS offerings. The blueprint leverages MEF’s existing body of work, while providing a common framework for understanding and defining NaaS for enterprises as well as Service Providers.

"The MEF NaaS Industry Blueprint provides a foundation for the industry to build on as it develops the NaaS ecosystem," said Nan Chen, President, MEF. "By providing a common framework for understanding and defining NaaS, the blueprint will help service providers develop and deliver innovative offerings and enable enterprises to make informed decisions about which are right for them. We are confident that the MEF NaaS Industry Blueprint will play a major role in driving the growth of the NaaS market and helping businesses achieve their digital transformation goals."

MEF defines NaaS as on-demand connectivity, application assurance, cybersecurity, and multi-cloud-based services across a standards-based automated ecosystem.

Specifically, the blueprint will:

  • Define NaaS and its core components and capabilities,
  • Propose primary building blocks of NaaS solutions, including services, automation platforms, ecosystem, and certifications,
  • Reference available MEF service and Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) automation API standards and other industry tools for building and delivering NaaS services,
  • Present initial NaaS use cases in the areas of on-demand transport, SD-WAN, SASE, and multi-cloud.

The blueprint was shared this at MEF’s inaugural Global Network-as-a-Service Event in Arlington, Texas. It can be downloaded from the MEF website.

ECOC23: Coherent unveils 140 GBaud optical subassembly for 800G

Coherent unveiled  its 140 GBaud integrated coherent transmitter-receiver optical subassembly (IC-TROSA), the industry’s first to enable 800G QSFP-DD and OSFP digital coherent optics (DCO) pluggable transceivers for high-speed datacenter interconnects and metro networks. The IC‑TROSA is a highly integrated coherent optics subassembly with embedded optical amplification that can deliver high transmitter output power with low power dissipation, enabling DCO modules that can plug directly into routers.

Coherent’s IC-TROSA was combined with the Orion digital signal processor (DSP) from Marvell to successfully demonstrate the performance capabilities of a complete transceiver solution for 800 Gbps transmission. 

The 140 GBaud IC-TROSA is a complete coherent optical engine that includes a wavelength-tunable laser, optical amplifiers, modulators, drivers, a coherent mixer, a photodiode array, and transimpedance amplifiers. It features an embedded microcontroller, DAC/ADCs, and a simple digital communication interface for all control and monitoring. The module supports symbol rates of up to 140 GBaud and multiple modulation formats, including QPSK, 8QAM, 16QAM, 32QAM, and 64QAM. It is designed to meet the requirements of the OIF IC-TROSA Implementation Agreement (Type-2 version). Alpha samples of the 140 GBaud IC-TROSA are available now and the product will be generally available in mid-2024.

This solution lowers the total cost of network ownership for hyperscalers and service providers by eliminating an entire layer of transponder equipment.

“This 140 GBaud IC-TROSA follows the 64 GBaud IC-TROSA introduced in March 2020, which was also an industry first,” said Matthias Berger, Vice President, Coherent Technology, at Coherent Corp. “We continue to advance the state of the art of optical transmission in core networks by leveraging the inherent capabilities of our indium phosphide technology platform. Indium phosphide photonic integrated circuits are differentiated by their high output power, which enables disruptive use cases such as IP-over-DWDM in metro networks.”

“Marvell’s close collaboration with Coherent has enabled us to showcase the power of the combination of technologies from two leading companies,” said Samuel Liu, Sr. Director, Product Line Management, Coherent DSP at Marvell. “Together, the 140 GBaud IC-TROSA and the Orion coherent DSP enable pluggable transceivers for 800 Gbps with more than 500 km reach, allowing datacenter interconnects to scale network capacity quickly and economically so as to accommodate the surging traffic from AI/ML and other distributed, data-intensive workloads.”

ECOC23: Source Photonics, Broadcom, Keysight demo 800G 4x200G LR4 OSFP

Source Photonics, along with Keysight and Broadcom, demonstrated 800G 4x200G LR4 OSFP transceivers ,marking a critical milestone for the development of next generation 200G/lambda based 800G and 1.6T optical transceivers.

The 800G LR4 OSFP optical modules incorporate the high power single lambda 200G PAM4 EML lasers assisted with 3D hybrid electro-optical on-board packaging for superior RF characteristics and with a LAN-WDM grid, low-loss package interconnect design and a WDM multiplexer, exceeding the wavelength requirements for the telecom-grade LAN-WDM. The receiving end consists of a highly integrated PIN+TIA receiver array combined with the high-performance start-of-the-art 5nm CMOS DSP equalization algorithm, and the transmission distance can reach up to 10km.

Compared with the first generation using a single lambda 100G PAM4 EML lasers, the 800G LR4 optical modules reduce the number of lasers by 50%, effectively reducing costs, simplifying manufacturing processes, and improving production yield.

800G optical modules as the default configuration of choice for the latest generation of optical transmission systems, have projected huge market application potential. At the same time, in order to satisfy the strong desire for low-cost, low-latency and low-power consumption by next-generation telecom metro applications, the 800G 4x200G LR4 10km direct detection solution has attracted more attention from operators, equipment manufacturers and optical module vendors over the corresponding coherent solutions.  The industrial supply chain of single-lambda 226Gb/s high-speed optical chips, DSPs and electrical chips, and RF packaging technologies related to the direct detection solutions has gradually matured.

ECOC23 Award winners

At ECOC23 Exhibition in Glasgow, the following award winners were announced:

Most innovative Product – Hybrid PIC/Optical Integration Platform Award finalists: Lightwave Logic

Data Centre Innovation/Best Product Award finalists: Marvell for Marvell Nova PAM4 electro-optics Digital Signal Processor (DSP) platform

Best Fibre/Fiber Component Product Award winner: RAM photonics for Medusa

Most innovative Product Award – Innovative Test Equipment finalists: Keysight for Keysight G800GE-02: 800GE Layer1 BERT, KP4 FEC and Layer 2 Packet Blast multiport test solution

Most innovative Product Award – Chip-Scale Packaging/Optical Sub Assembly finalists: Infinera for ICTR-64 TROSA

Most Innovative PON/5G/FTTx Product Award finalists: Huawei Technologies for Huawei FTTR Solution

Most innovative Product Award – Innovative Test Equipment finalists: Keysight for Keysight G800GE-02: 800GE Layer1 BERT, KP4 FEC and Layer 2 Packet Blast multiport test solution

Most innovative Product Award – Innovative Photonics Component finalists:  Coherent for Coherent’s new 200Gbps PAM4 DFB-MZ chip

Most innovative product Award – Pluggable Transceiver/Co-Packaged Module finalists: Ciena for WaveLogic 6

Optical Transport Award finalists: China Mobile for Single-carrier 138-GBd DP-QPSK 32Tb/s DWDM System Covering 12-THz C+L Band

Vertical Systems: Mid-2023 U.S. SD-WAN Technology LEADERBOARD

 Cisco tops Vertical Systems Group’ first U.S. SD-WAN Technology LEADERBOARD, which ranks Technology Suppliers based on share of total Carrier Managed SD-WAN sites in the U.S. powered by their SD-WAN equipment. The following five Technology Suppliers have attained a position on this initial benchmark (in rank order based on site share): Cisco, VMware, Fortinet, Versa Networks, and HPE Aruba. Each of these Technology Suppliers has 5% or more of the total number of U.S. Carrier Managed SD-WAN customer sites installed and billable as of June 30, 2023. For this analysis a site is counted once per supplier, regardless of the amount of SD-WAN equipment installed at the customer location.

“Our new benchmark measures market presence across the technology suppliers empowering enterprise-grade SD-WAN solutions in the U.S. Carrier Managed segment. As migration to managed SD-WAN solutions accelerates, technology suppliers are actively enhancing their products to keep pace, while vying to integrate SASE and SSE capabilities,” states Rosemary Cochran, Principal of Vertical Systems Group.

These leading technology companies and others are the key suppliers of SD-WAN equipment deployed by the service providers ranked on Vertical Systems Group’s Mid-2023 U.S. Carrier Managed SD-WAN LEADERBOARD - AT&T, Comcast Business, Verizon, Hughes, Lumen, and Windstream - as well as to service providers cited in the Challenge and Market Player tiers.

SD-WAN Technology Research Highlights

  • Vertical projects that the number of Carrier Managed SD-WAN sites in the U.S. will surpass one million by 2027. These sites are managed by a network operator, utilize an SDN architecture, enable dynamic optimization of site connectivity, and provide centralized network control with visibility end-to-end.
  • For this analysis, SD-WAN solutions for Cisco include Meraki MX and Cisco SD-WAN. VMware offers SD-WAN by VeloCloud, and Fortinet offers FortiGate. Versa’s solution is Secure SD-WAN, and HPE Aruba offers EdgeConnect SD-WAN.
  • Technology suppliers providing SD-WAN equipment to service providers may also supply SASE and SSE solutions. A SASE Service Framework (MEF 117) was finalized by MEF in October 2022. There is no accepted industry standard for SSE.
  • Some service providers deploy SD-WAN with their own internally developed SD-WAN platforms, including Hughes and Aryaka.
  • Security integration was cited as a top challenge in 2022 for Managed SD-WAN service providers offering two or more different SD-WAN platforms. Based on our mid-2023 research, this challenge is more problematic both technically and operationally, with some providers now integrating security across as many as five or more different SD-WAN solutions.
  • MEF 3.0 SD-WAN Technology Certification has been attained by the following four LEADERBOARD companies: Cisco, Fortinet, VMware and Versa.

Market Players in this U.S. SD-WAN Technology segment include all other companies with site share below five percent (5%) of total U.S. Carrier Managed SD-WAN customer sites. For mid-2023, the Market Player tier includes the following companies (in alphabetical order): Adaptiv Networks, Arista, Barracuda, Cradlepoint, Ecessa, Extreme Networks, FatPipe, Forcepoint, GFI Software, Huawei, Juniper Networks, Lavelle Networks, Mushroom Networks, Netscaler, Nuage Networks from Nokia, Oracle, Palo Alto Networks, Riverbed, Teldat, WatchGuard, and others.

ECOC23: Quantifi presents Oscilloscope for testing optical interconnects

Quantifi Photonics introduced a new line of digital sampling oscilloscopes to launch in 2024 for manufacturers of next-gen optical interconnects.

The new DSO-1000 Series targets applications across 100-800G and 1.6T Ethernet, emerging Co-Packaged Optics and In-package Optical I/O, and computer interfaces such as PCI Express and USB.  

Quantifi says its DSO-1000 Series will enable high density, parallel testing for high-volume manufacturing, and can be easily integrated into existing assembly and alignment equipment used to manufacture next-generation interconnects.

Dr. Andy Stevens, CEO of Quantifi Photonics says, “The missing link in high-volume testing and manufacturing for optical and electrical interconnects has been an accurate oscilloscope platform that is scalable. This class of instruments needs to meet a strict set of requirements and we believe Quantifi Photonics is the first company to deliver this with the DSO-1000 Series. We are working closely with lead customers on final specifications and will be releasing our first models with additional capabilities in 2024. These products have the potential to be a true game changer for the industry by substantially reducing the total cost of ownership for oscilloscopes.”

Dr. Klaus Engenhardt, Director of Broadband Products at Quantifi Photonics says, “Testing presents significant cost and technical obstacles for high-volume manufacturers of modern interconnect devices with few commercially attractive test solutions available to the industry. We have been working hard to develop a robust and high-performance platform that helps our customers design and implement efficient test systems that fundamentally change the throughput versus cost ratio, and we are very excited to provide a preview of the capabilities of our new oscilloscope platform at ECOC.”

ECOC23: Openlight samples its 2x FR4 Photonic ASIC

OpenLight announced sampling of a fully integrated 2x FR4 Photonic Application Specific Integrated Circuit (2xFR4 PASIC). 

The 2xFR4 PASIC, an 800G photonic integrated circuit (PIC) is designed for data center and AI cluster connections. It harnesses the power of heterogeneous integration, seamlessly combining lasers and electro-absorption modulators for unparalleled performance and versatility with the cost and reliability of traditional silicon photonics. 

OpenLight says one of the standout features of the 2xFR4 PASIC is its integration of all essential components into a single chip, replacing up to 16 individual components that would otherwise require assembly steps with disparate parts and complex back end manufacturing processes adding cost and large capital equipment expenditures. This results in simplified supply chain logistics and straightforward manufacturing processes that drastically reduce power consumption and overall costs compared to other solutions.

“With our revolutionary integration of lasers and electro-absorption modulators, 2xFR4 PASIC epitomizes our dedication to simplifying complexity, reducing costs, and setting new standards in efficiency,” said Dr. Adam Carter, CEO of OpenLight. “We're providing our customers with a validated reference design that not only accelerates their time to market but also empowers them to take control of their destiny in the supply chain.”

ECOC23: OpenLight teams with Spark Photonics on design layout

OpenLight has formed a strategic partnership with Spark Photonics, an end-to-end integrated photonics design services firm. 

Spark Photonics will now offer design and layout services using the OpenLight process design kit (PDK) with the Luceda IPKISS design layout and simulation software suite. The expansion of design services increases the number of designs OpenLight can support at any one time on the Tower Semiconductor PH18DA process, reducing time to market for photonic integrated circuits (PICs) and expanding the silicon photonics industry’s reach to drive advancements across applications.

“Today marks an important step forward in our company’s journey. With the integration of industry-leading expertise and resources from OpenLight and Luceda coupled with best-in-class design services from Spark, we are fostering a new era for customers to tape in MPW engineering and production wafer run designs directly to Tower,” said Dr. Adam Carter, CEO of OpenLight. “This partnership empowers our customers to address distinct design needs, diversify their design portfolio, and resolve compatibility challenges.”

The OpenLight PDK incorporates both active and passive components, enabling advanced access to silicon photonics with heterogeneous integration. Mutual customers now have an array of choices from an EDA tool perspective to ensure first-time success in design verification and implementation.

ECOC23: MACOM extends copper cable reach for 1.6T with 227 Gbps Equalizers

MACOM expanded its portfolio of active copper cable equalizers, with the first 227 Gbps per lane copper cable equalizer device that extends twinax copper cable reach. 

Traditionally, Direct Attach passive copper Cable (DAC) transmission at 227 Gbps per lane has been limited to about one meter in length. MACOM’s new linear equalizers more than double the reach of copper cables, enabling longer 1.6 Tbit copper cable assemblies used in intra-rack connectivity for high-performance Ethernet, InfiniBand, Fibre Channel and proprietary interconnect applications.

Emerging AI and high-performance computing clusters demand high bandwidth and low latency connectivity serviced by eight-lane octal small form factor pluggable (OSFP) and quad small form factor double density (QSFP-DD-based) cables. By utilizing un-retimed, linear equalization techniques, lower power and lower link latency is achieved compared to DSP retimed copper cables. These are critical parameters in high-performance computing and AI high density cluster applications. 

The two MACOM products supporting this solution are MAEQ-40904, a small form-factor die solution and MAEQ-40914, the packaged version of the part. The devices’ small size and low power consumption make them ideal for implementation in small form factor cable connectors, such as two channel DSFP, four channel QSFP and eight channel QSFP-DD and OSFP.

Teledyne to acquire Xena Networks for Ethernet test tools

Teledyne Technologies agreed to acquire Xena Networks ApS, a provider of high-speed Terabit Ethernet validation, quality assurance, and production test solutions based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Xena Networks test tools offer in-depth Ethernet link training and auto negotiation test capabilities, which next generation Terabit Ethernet products need to ensure that expected performance is achieved.

“The Xena Networks acquisition will further establish our leadership in the protocol test market, extending our reach to Ethernet system validation engineers, quality assurance labs, and production lines for test, evaluation, and acceptance of Ethernet components and systems,” said Robert Mehrabian, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Teledyne. 

“The acquisition of LeCroy in 2012 provided a healthy and growing portfolio of protocol test businesses focused on PCI Express, USB as well as storage and networking technologies. Since then, we expanded Teledyne LeCroy’s protocol test business with multiple acquisitions, including Quantum Data (for video), Frontline (for Bluetooth and WiFi) and OakGate (for storage devices test solutions). Xena Networks will be a powerful addition to this strong and growing protocol test portfolio.”

 “Combining the traffic generation and network emulation capabilities of Xena Networks with the protocol analysis functionality of Teledyne LeCroy will deliver a unique value proposition in support of semiconductor and network equipment manufacturers, network service providers, and hyperscale and cloud computing providers,” said Kevin Prusso, Vice President and General Manager of Teledyne LeCroy.

Jacob Vestergaard Nielsen, Xena Networks Chief Executive Officer, said, “We’re excited to join Teledyne LeCroy and leverage its wide coverage of protocols technologies. In particular, Teledyne’s network protocol analysis solutions complement well our traffic generation, physical layer, and network emulation products with support of up to 800Gbps Terabit Ethernet data rates, to the benefit of our customers.”

Ciena announces two executive promotions

 Ciena announced the promotion of Dino DiPerna and Brodie Gage to its Executive Leadership Team, reporting to President and CEO Gary Smith. 

DiPerna becomes Ciena’s Senior Vice President of Global Research & Development (R&D). In this role, he will direct the development of the company’s portfolio of Converged Packet Optical, Network Control and Planning, and Routing and Switching products and solutions. DiPerna most recently served as Ciena’s Vice President of R&D for the company’s optical product portfolio.

Gage becomes Ciena’s Senior Vice President of Global Products and Supply Chain. He will oversee several critical functions, including Product Line Management, Global Supply Chain, and Solutions, Engineering, and Introduction (SE&I). Gage most recently served as Ciena’s Vice President of Product Line Management and Solutions.