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New implementation agreement could pave the way for advanced co-packaged optics applications

OIF has unveiled its new External Laser Small Form-Factor Pluggable (ELSFP) implementation agreement (IA)

OIF has unveiled its new External Laser Small Form-Factor Pluggable (ELSFP) implementation agreement (IA)


OIF has unveiled its new External Laser Small Form-Factor Pluggable (ELSFP) implementation agreement (IA), defining a front panel pluggable form factor tailored to co-packaged optical systems and other multiple laser external laser source applications.

The ELSFP IA introduces the multi-sourced future-proof front panel pluggable external laser source form factor to address the evolving needs of the optical communications industry. It is designed to offer numerous benefits, including definitions for the placement of laser sources at the front panel, the coolest section of the system, enhancing system reliability and allowing for efficient “hot-swap” field replacement when necessary.

The ELSFP uses a multi-fibre blind-mate optical connector positioned at the rear of the module. This strategic design is to mitigate potential eye-safety risks, particularly in applications where high optical powers are involved. Each ELSFP can supply optical power to one or more optical engines, all managed by OIF’s Common Management Interface Specification (CMIS).

This IA also defines interoperability for mechanical, thermal, electrical and optical parameters as well as establishing standard power ranges and fibre configurations to focus the industry’s development. The final feature is the pass-through option which allows systems architects to maximise faceplate real estate, solidifying ELSFP’s position as a versatile and adaptable solution for various optical networking applications.

The ELSFP project was originally envisioned to complement the 3.2T co-packaged optical module, however, the organisation believes that its forward-looking design could make it easily extensible to address future requirements.

Jeff Hutchins, OIF Board Member and Physical & Link Layer (PLL) Working Group Co-Packaging Vice Chair and Ranovus says: “The ELSFP IA represents a significant milestone for the optical networking industry. By providing a front panel pluggable external laser source form factor, we’re empowering network operators and equipment manufacturers with a cutting-edge solution that not only improves reliability but also paves the way for future innovations. The ELSFP’s flexible design accommodates the ever-changing needs of the industry, enabling seamless integration with OIF’s 3.2T co-packaged optical module project and beyond.”

Jock Bovington, Cisco, and editor of the OIF ELSFP IA says: “The ELSFP has already garnered a favourable industry reception through its potential to propel external laser source applications forward, as evidenced by strong collaboration among OIF member both in writing the IA and the substantial engagement in numerous interoperability demonstrations facilitated by OIF.”



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