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Finisar 100G SWDM4 QSFP28 optics enter production

Finisar announced that it is in full production of its 100G shortwave wavelength division multiplexing (SWDM) optical transceiver, which is compliant with the 100G SWDM4 specification defined by the SWDM multi-source agreement (MSA).

The pluggable QSFP28 transceiver is the first mass-produced module capable of transmitting 100Gb/s over a pair of multimode fibres, thus enabling users to upgrade their systems from 10 Gigabit Ethernet to 100 Gigabit Ethernet without changing their data centre cabling.

Many data centres are configured to carry 10Gb/s optical signals over duplex multimode fibre, where one fibre is used to transmit a signal and the other is used to receive a signal. However, transceiver modules based on the IEEE 40GBASE-SR4 or 100GBASE-SR4 standards rely on four fibre pairs (i.e. eight fibres) to carry 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s Ethernet, respectively.

The transceiver, system, and cabling suppliers that constitute the SWDM MSA have agreed on specifications that avoid the need for this additional fibre, and therefore allow data centres to continue using their existing multimode fibre plant (see Taking multimode fibre to new wavelengths).

Finisar completed reliability testing and released a 40Gb/s SWDM4 module earlier this year, and is now also the first vendor to complete reliability testing and release a 100Gb/s SWDM4 module.  These modules comply with the 40G SWDM4 and 100G SWDM4 specifications of the SWDM MSA, respectively.

"Finisar's SWDM modules are the first of their kind to finish qualification and be released to mass production," confirmed Dale Murray, principal analyst at LightCounting Market Research.  "These duplex multimode fibre modules provide systems vendors with a strong competitive advantage against other vendors who offer only parallel multimode optics at 40G and 100G to their data centre customers."

James Wynia, director of network product management at Dell EMC, agrees. "The SWDM modules provide great value to our data centre customers," he said. "The ability to leverage existing 10G fibre infrastructure not only saves our customers additional capital expenditure, but also provides operational savings by eliminating the need for new fibre installation and associated facility upgrades."

"We are pleased to offer Finisar's SWDM modules to our customers," said Yi Zhaoping, product development manager at New H3C Technologies.  "SWDM modules are an example of how New H3C allows our customers to maximise the value of their prior investments and seamlessly scale their data centres."

In addition to the 40G SWDM4 and 100G SWDM4 modules currently in production, Finisar demonstrated an extended-reach 100G eSWDM4 module at ECOC 2017 in Gothenburg, Sweden.


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