Collaboration created to aid 400G pluggable transition

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Microchip Technology and Acacia have teamed up to help enable the market transition to 400G pluggable coherent optics for data centre routing, switching and metro optical transport network (OTN) platforms.

The two companies aim to bring to market interoperable solution sets consisting of Microchip’s DIGI-G5 OTN processor and META-DX1 terabit secured-Ethernet PHY and Acacia’s 400G pluggable coherent optics. The purpose of the collaboration is to establish an ecosystem to support 400G CFP2-DCO, QSFP-DD and OSFP modules for the 400ZR specification as well as the OpenZR+ and Open ROADM Multi-Source Agreement (MSA) applications. 

The collaboration is designed to help enable the use of 400G coherent pluggables in OTN and Ethernet systems in a number of ways. For converged packet/OTN optical platforms, Microchip’s DIGI-G5 and Acacia’s 400G CFP2-DCO module are designed to enable terabit-class OTN switching line cards, muxponders, and switchponders. The DIGI-G5 interoperates with Acacia’s 400G CFP2-DCO module using a Flexible OTN (FlexO) or NxOTU4 interface to efficiently support OTN traffic, including Open ROADM MSA interface modes and 200G/400G ITU-T standards currently being drafted.   

For compact modular optical systems, Microchip’s META-DX1 and Acacia’s 400ZR and OpenZR+ modules are designed to enable 400G flexible line rate muxponders/transponders with support for multiple client optics types including QSFP28, QSFP-DD, and OSFP modules, helping service providers to transition from 100GbE to 400GbE using the same hardware.

For data centre routing and switching platforms, Microchip’s META-DX1 and Acacia’s 400ZR and OpenZR+ modules are designed to enable dense 400GbE or FlexE with per-port MACsec encryption coherent line cards. This helps customers leverage IP routers/switches over DWDM (IPoDWDM) infrastructure in DCI deployments.   

Babak Samimi, vice president for Microchip’s Communications business unit commented: ‘Our interoperability efforts with Acacia help to demonstrate that an ecosystem for volume deployment of these new line cards with pluggable 400G coherent optics exists.’ 

Markus Weber, senior director DSP, product line management of Acacia (now part of Cisco) added: ‘With Acacia’s 400G coherent modules verified to interoperate with Microchip’s DIGI-G5 and META-DX1 devices, we see it as a robust solution designed to address network capacity growth and improved efficiency.’

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