Ultra-Compact External Cavity Tunable Lasers for Coherent 400G-1.2T Applications

Posted Mar 12, 2019 by NeoPhotonics Corporation

NeoPhotonics, at the OFC event, announced limited availability of its Nano ultra-compact external cavity integrated tunable laser assembly (ITLA). The new Nano-ITLA is based on the same proven and reliable high performance external cavity architecture as NeoPhotonics' industry leading Micro-ITLA product line.

The Nano-ITLA maintains comparable ultra-narrow line width, low frequency phase noise and the low power consumption, for which the current product is known, but in a compact package, approximately one half the size. It utilizes an ASIC control IC that reduces the size of required electronic control circuitry. It is well suited for use in 400ZR small form factor pluggable coherent modules, including OSFP and QSFP-DD, and for compact daughter cards for 600G and 1.2T applications.

Coherent communications is moving simultaneously to higher data rates per wavelength and to smaller form factors, requiring higher performance from the optical components at the same time that the size and power must be significantly reduced. Increasing the symbol rate to 64 Gbaud and using higher order modulation, such as 16 QAM to 64 QAM, can increase the data rate per wavelength to 400G or 600G. However, such higher order modulation schemes are more sensitive to both amplitude and phase noise since the separation between states is necessarily reduced.

As a result, this situation requires the most stable, ultra-narrow line width laser sources. The new Nano-ITLA uses a miniaturized design while maintaining the performance of an external cavity design, which results in high output power, low electrical power consumption and the narrowest line width in the industry – resulting in high fidelity in higher order modulation formats.

NeoPhotonics, at OFC, also demonstrated its suite of coherent components for 600G to a Terabit, along with its broad family of products for high speed applications. Click here for more highlights from the event.