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Open Eye MSA Consortium Targets Optical Connectivity

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Semiconductor, photonic component, and system companies focus on defining interoperable spec

The Open Eye Consortium has established a Multi-Source Agreement (MSA) outlining its mission to standardise advanced specifications for lower latency, more power efficient and lower cost optical modules targeting 50Gbps, 100Gbps, 200Gbps, and up to 400Gbps optical modules for data centre interconnects over single-mode and multimode fibre.

The MSA aims to accelerate the adoption of PAM-4 optical interconnects scaling to 50Gbps, 100Gbps, 200Gbps, and 400Gbps by expanding upon existing standards to enable optical module implementations using less complex, lower cost, lower power, and optimised clock and data recovery (CDR) based architectures in addition to existing digital signal processing (DSP) architectures.

Minimising the need for digital signal processing in optical modules has many advantages including significantly lowering latency, power consumption and cost. The Open Eye industry consortium is committed to investing its collective innovation and engineering resources for the development of an industry-standard optical interconnect that leverages seamless component interoperability among a broad group of industry-leading technology providers, including providers of electronics, lasers and optical components.

The initial Open Eye MSA specification will focus on 53Gbps per lane PAM-4 solutions for 50G SFP, 100G DSFP, 100G SFP-DD, 200G QSFP, and 400G QSFP-DD and OSFP single-mode modules. Subsequent specifications will aim to address multimode and 100Gbps per lane applications.

Macom and Semtech Corporation initiated the formation of the Open Eye MSA with 19 current members in Promoter and Contributing membership classes.

Promoters include Applied Optoelectronics, Cambridge Industries (CIG), Color Chip, Juniper Networks, Luxshare-ICT, Macom, Mellanox, Molex and Semtech Corporation. Contributors include: Accelink, Cloud Light Technology, InnoLight, Keysight Technologies, Maxim Integrated, O-Net, Optomind, Source Photonics and Sumitomo Electric.

“Macom continues to drive the industry's technical requirements towards meeting the demands of Cloud Service Providers. Leveraging our proven leadership in 25G, 50G and 100G analogue chipsets and optical components, we co-founded the Open Eye MSA to accelerate the adoption of 200G and 400G PAM optical interconnects. At the same time we are working in parallel to advance the DSP technologies necessary for faster connectivity speeds for future applications,” said Preet Virk, senior VP and general manager of networks for Macom.

“Semtech's long history of innovation and leadership in analogue optical architectures is the ideal complement to the Open Eye MSA collaborative effort, and we will help to drive an interoperability specification that enables multiple supply sources.” Gary Beauchamp, executive VP and general manager, signal integrity products Group, Semtech Corporation.

The initial specification release is planned for Fall 2019, with product availability to follow later in the year.


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