Thursday, May 30, 2024

Photonic Inc and Microsoft: Quantum entanglement at telecom wavelengths

Photonic Inc., a start-up developing distributed quantum computing in silicon, cited a significant milestone: entanglement between modules. 

Microsoft, which has been collaborating with Photonic since last November, said the "accomplishment demonstrates that existing telecommunication networks have the potential to enable long-distance quantum communications—the foundation for a quantum internet and distributed quantum computing."  

Photonic’s approach is based on optically linked silicon spin qubits with a native telecom networking interface, meaning that it can integrate with the infrastructure, platforms, and scale of today’s global telecommunications networks, including the Microsoft Azure cloud. Three demonstrations, culminating in the teleported CNOT gate sequence, established and consumed distributed quantum entanglement—entanglement between qubits not adjacent to one another or even in the same cryostat.

“The crucial role that entanglement distribution will play in unlocking the commercial promise of quantum computing cannot be overstated. Large-scale quantum algorithms running across multiple quantum computers require enormous amounts of distributed entanglement to work well,” said Dr. Stephanie Simmons, Founder and Chief Quantum Officer at Photonic. “These demonstrations highlight the promise of our distinctive architectural approach to solve the challenge of scaling beyond single nodes. While there is still much work ahead, it’s important to acknowledge the pivotal role that entanglement distribution must play in shaping quantum system designs.”

Read Photonic’s scientific paper 

Read Photonic’s new whitepaper Distributed Quantum Computing in Silicon: Entanglement Between Modules

Read the Microsoft Azure Quantum Blog

Photonic Inc builds its Quantum team

Photonic Inc., a start-up based in Vancouver that is advancing distributed quantum computing in silicon, announced key additions to its research team:Dr. Chantal Arena joins as vice president of research, development, and production – devices. Arena has 35 years' experience in business strategy, materials science, and semiconductor devices fabrication, most recently as co-chief executive and technical officer at Lawrence Semiconductors. She holds...

Photonic Inc. unveils its quantum in silicon, $140m in funding

Photonic Inc., a start-up based in Vancouver, unveiled its architecture for scalable, fault-tolerant, and unified quantum computing and networking platforms based on photonically linked silicon spin qubits. The company specializes in spin-photon interfaces in silicon, silicon integrated photonics, and quantum optics. Photonic's technology provides computing (with spin qubits), networking (via photons), and memory. Photonic links in silicon deliver...


Marvell intros PCIe retimers based on PAM4

Marvell introduced its Alaska P PCIe retimer product line for data center compute fabrics inside accelerated servers, general-purpose servers, CXL systems and disaggregated infrastructure. 

The first two products, 8- and 16-lane PCIe Gen 6 retimers, connect AI accelerators, GPUs, CPUs and other components inside server systems.  The 16-lane retimer is sampling now to customers and ecosystem partners; the 8-lane product will sample next quarter. 

PCIe retimers are key to supporting the faster inside-server-system connection speeds of PCIe Gen 6 over longer distances.

PCIe Gen 6, which operates at 64 gigatransfers-per-second (GT/s), is the first PCIe standard to use four-level pulse-amplitude modulation (PAM4) signaling, displacing the non-return to zero (NRZ) modulation used for the last 20 years. The higher bandwidth and faster data rate limit the physical reach signals can travel reliably, reducing the distance connections can span. 

Marvell Alaska P retimers address this by compensating for the signal degradations and regenerating the signal to deliver reliable communication over the physical distances required for connections between GPUs and CPUs within an AI server, between GPUs on different boards, or between CPUs and a pool of shared memory enabled by CXL, among other use cases. 

Marvell says its retimers can be used on AI accelerator baseboards, server motherboards, riser cards, or integrated into active electrical cables (PCIe AEC) and active optical cables (PCIe AOC) for emerging multi-rack server system architectures.

The retimers can be used for on-board or cable copper connections or combined with electrical-to-optical components to produce optical PCIe modules, addressing different cloud customer data center architectures. Marvell is working with cable and optical module partners to integrate the products into cloud-optimized interconnect solutions for different data center customer applications.

Key features include:

  • Compatible with PCI Express Gen 6/5/4/3/2/1 and Compute Express Link 3/2/1.1
  • Industry-leading PAM4 SerDes performance
  • Low-latency mode for cache-coherent links
  • Industry’s lowest power consumption (10W PCIe 6 x16)
  • Industry-standard x16 and x8 footprints
  • Advanced telemetry and diagnostics: in-band FEC monitoring, out-of-band SerDes eye monitoring, embedded logic analyzer and software suite for fleet management in large-scale deployments

“Marvell is the industry leader for data center-to-data center, switch-to-switch, rack-to-rack, server-to-switch, and server-to-server connectivity. We are now entering the market for compute fabrics as PCIe and CXL go through an inflection point, migrating from NRZ to PAM4 technology,” said Venu Balasubramonian, vice president of product marketing, Connectivity Business Unit at Marvell. “Marvell is building on more than 10 years of in-house expertise in PAM4 technology and our industry-leading 5nm PAM4 IP portfolio to enable this transition. Our Alaska P PCIe retimer family is an important addition to the comprehensive Marvell accelerated infrastructure portfolio.”

  • Marvell has been a pioneer in PAM4 technology for over a decade, and the new Alaska P PCIe retimer product line expands its PAM4 connectivity portfolio beyond Ethernet and InfiniBand to include copper and optical PCIe, CXL, and proprietary compute fabric links, addressing connections within AI and general-purpose server systems and broadening Marvell’s market reach.
  • In 2023, Marvell introduced Nova, the industry’s first 1.6T PAM4 DSP, along with integrated PAM4 DSPs (Perseus) and efficiency-optimized DSPs (Spica Gen2-T) to support various cloud data center link types and use cases. Additionally, Marvell’s PAM4 technology underpins the Alaska A DSP chips, which are optimized for active electrical cable (AEC) applications.

European Commission approves KKR's acquisition of TIM

 The European Commission has approved unconditionally the acquisition by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR), a U.S.-based investment group, of NetCo., which comprises the primary and backbone fixed-line network business of Telecom Italia S.p.A. (‘TIM') as well as FiberCop S.p.A (‘FiberCop'). FiberCop is a joint venture between TIM and KKR comprising TIM's secondary fixed-line network.

The deal, which was announced in November 2023, is valued at EUR 22 billion.

The Commission's investigation into the impact of the acquisition found that:

  • KKR would not have the ability to restrict access to passive services (i.e., infrastructure). For each wholesale product the number of available networks and wholesale providers will stay the same and the market power of NetCo will not materially increase as compared to TIM or FiberCop today. The existing long-term agreements with several access seekers, including Fastweb and Iliad, which have been entered into after the creation of FiberCop in 2021, ensure that KKR will not be able to deteriorate the conditions for wholesale access or terminate such access.
  • The transaction would not increase the likelihood of coordination between NetCo and OpenFiber, given that Fastweb will continue to exert competitive pressure on NetCo and its long-standing competitor, Open Fiber. In addition, NetCo and Open Fiber will likely continue to compete, both to attract new customers and to roll-out fibre network, either in new areas or in each other's areas.

Google to build US$2 billion for Cloud region in Malaysia

Google is investing US$2 billion for its first Google data center and Google Cloud region in Malaysia. 

The new facility will be located in the Elmina Business Park in the Greater Kuala Lumpur region.

Marvell posts revenue of $1.161 billion

Marvell Technology reported net revenue for its first quarter of fiscal 2025 of $1.161 billion, $11.0 million above the mid-point of the company's guidance provided on March 7, 2024. GAAP net loss for the first quarter of fiscal 2025 was $(215.6) million, or $(0.25) per diluted share. Non-GAAP net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2025 was $206.7 million, or $0.24 per diluted share. Cash flow from operations for the first quarter was $324.5 million.

"Marvell delivered first quarter fiscal 2025 revenue of $1.161 billion, above the mid-point of guidance, driven by stronger than forecasted demand from AI. Our data center revenue grew 87% year over year, with the start of a ramp in our custom AI programs complementing our substantial base of electro-optics revenue," said Matt Murphy, Marvell's Chairman and CEO. "For the second quarter of fiscal 2025, we are guiding an 8% sequential increase in revenue at the mid-point, fueled by ramping custom AI silicon. We see a favorable setup for the second half of this fiscal year, driven by continued growth in data center and the beginning of a recovery in enterprise networking and carrier infrastructure."