MACOM Technology Solutions aims to use GlobalFoundries’ silicon-photonics manufacturing option for its 90nm silicon-on-insulator (SOI) process to build higher-integration optical-switching devices for servers.
MACOM said the manufacturing process on 300mm wafers should deliver higher capacities and lower costs for devices that combine optical modulators, multiplexers, and detectors into a single silicon substrate. For the L-PIC technology devices that GF will fab, MACOM has come up with a way of more easily aligning lasers and attaching them to the photonic integrated circuit (PIC).
The communications-IC company expects the data center industry to enter a long upgrade cycle, which will involve the installation of network interfaces that employ Coarse Wavelength Division Multiplexing (CWDM) and PAM-4 signaling.
“With the demand for bandwidth doubling inside data centers each year, cloud service providers are supply constrained in moving to 100G and beyond. On top of this, telecom carriers are now adopting the same CWDM and PAM-4 optical standards for their 5G network buildouts. The ability to efficiently scale transceiver capacity and manufacturing throughput is critical,” said John Croteau, president and CEO of MACOM. “By aligning capacity expansion between GF’s silicon photonics technology and MACOM’s EFT Lasers, and moving to 300mm wafers, we believe that this very strategic collaboration will allow us to meet industry demand and position us to service the industry for years to come.”