High Speed Coherent Communications

Coherent communications is the technology of choice for high speed data transmission in Cloud infrastructure and data center interconnection, in addition to telecom networks, where the highest speeds over distance were first developed. Networks operating at 400G and beyond data rates have adopted coherent transmission technology because of its ability to increase data rates, increase network capacities and lower costs. These high speed networks are among the highest growth segments of the optical communications market, and support the rapid expansion of telecom backbone, hyper-scale data center and content provider networks, accommodating increased mobile traffic. The key components required to make a coherent transceiver are three critical optical components: (1) a laser with a very narrow linewidth for ultra-pure light; (2) a coherent modulator capable of changing both the intensity and phase of the optical signal to code data onto it; and (3) a coherent receiver capable of detecting both the intensity and phase of the received optical signal to “understand” its content, plus an electronic digital signal processor IC (DSP).

NeoPhotonics has been a leading volume supplier of these optical components since coherent systems were first deployed volume in telecommunications networks in 2011. NeoPhotonics individual Photonic Integrated Circuits (PICs) are combined using our hybrid integration technology to make complete products, such as our Coherent Optical Sub-assembly (“COSA”), our Intradyne Coherent Receiver (“ICR”) and Coherent Driver-Modulator (“CDM”), and our ultra-narrow linewidth (“NLW”) tunable laser for 400G and beyond coherent transport, Metro and DCI applications.

NeoPhotonics is now the leading supplier of NLW ultra-pure light tunable lasers and coherent receivers to the coherent market, and has introduced new high speed coherent modulators for 400G, 600G and above applications. NeoPhotonics combines its internally designed and manufactured coherent COSA and Narrow Linewidth Laser with a commercially available DSP to manufacture 400ZR modules, including 400G CFPx, OSFP and DD-QSFP digital coherent optical (“DCO”) transceivers for Cloud, data center interconnect and telecom wireline and wireless networks.

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