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Inphi and Neophotonics partner on 100G optical modules

21 February 2012
High-speed semiconductor company Inphi has partnered with optical module vendor NeoPhotonics on development of 100G next-generation optics.  The applications being targeted include high-density data centre and cloud computing applications as well as 100G optical transport.
NeoPhotonics plans to use its technology expertise in photonic integration “to develop and design next-generation 100G optical solutions”.  The company makes planar lightwave circuits (PLCs) using silica-on-silicon technology, and gained indium-phosphide integration capabilities through its purchase of Santur last year (see NeoPhotonics acquires photonic integration specialist Santur).
Inphi brings a portfolio of 100G silicon, which includes physical layer (PHY) and clock data recovery (CDR) chipsets along with transimpedance amplifiers (TIAs), for NeoPhotonics to use in 100G optical product development. 
Inphi was one of the first suppliers to announce 100G chips manufactured using CMOS process technology. The company claims that its mixed-signal semiconductor devices made in CMOS provide higher performance and lower power consumption than competing parts made in silicon-germanium.  The company’s CMOS PHYs and CDRs have roughly one third of the power consumption in half the footprint compared to existing products, offering improving reliability without sacrificing performance, the company claims.
"Our next-generation 100G optical solutions can benefit from Inphi's technology leadership position in the 100G market and help us deliver high levels of performance and low power consumption for our PIC-based product portfolio," said Tim Jenks, chairman and CEO of NeoPhotonics.
By Pauline Rigby