Molex ramps 400G ZR QSFP-DD transceiver production to meet DCI demands

March 2, 2022
The connectivity giant says its collaboration with Marvell on QSFP-DD coherent optical transceivers stands to simplify and strengthen edge and data center networks.

Molex announced it is ramping production of its commercially available 400G ZR QSFP-DD pluggable coherent optical transceivers to support ever-increasing demands for advanced data center interconnect (DCI) solutions.

An integral part of Molex’s optical transceiver line, the company says its 400G ZR and 400G ZR+ products are designed to deliver optimized data transmission rates with low power consumption in a small form factor.

“Molex is meeting the need for faster transmission speeds both between and inside next-gen data centers,” said Joseph Chon, director, Coherent Technology and Product Line Management, Molex Optoelectronics. “By ramping commercialization and production of the 400G ZR product line, we can enable mega-cloud data center operators to better address a vast range of high-density, bandwidth-intensive applications.”

The company contends that the rapid rise in work-from-home and distance learning has created unprecedented bandwidth requirements, which also are impacted by major adoption of streaming video, social networking and applications leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and cloud computing.

As a result, data center operators are seeking high-density, low-latency and low-power Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) links to connect multiple data centers.

With Molex’s 400G ZR QSFP-DD coherent optical transceivers, the company notes operators "can connect data centers within a region, enabling them to function as a single data center without the need for a separate transport box."

Standards-based, verified performance

Designed in compliance with the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) 400G ZR standard, Molex’s 400G ZR is among the first standards-based, pluggable coherent optical modules to be commercially available in volume.

In addition, the 400G OpenZR+, which is slated for availability in Q2, extends reach from 120km to about 600km at low power consumption to enable 12.8T in 1RU switch or router chassis.

Molex also completed experimental verification of 400 Gb/s data transmission over DCI ZR distances in a 75 GHz spaced DWDM link with amplification in an Open Line System (OLS). Using the compact, cost-effective Molex 400G ZR QSFP-DD transceiver modules in conjunction with 75 GHz OLS increases bandwidth capacity of optical fibers in a DCI application and can decrease the cost per bit significantly, the company stated .

Collaboration with Marvell drives adoption of IP-over-DWDM

In related news, Molex announced it is collaborating with Marvell to further enable simplified, more reliable edge and data center networks. This week, Marvell issued a news release announcing plans to work with Molex on a 400G QSFP-DD optical module based on the Marvell Deneb Coherent DSP (CDSP) while fully supporting the OpenZR+ Multi-Source Agreement (MSA).

Visit Molex at OFC 2022 (March 7-9) in San Diego, CA.

About the Author

Matt Vincent | Senior Editor

Matt Vincent is a B2B technology journalist, editor and content producer with over 15 years of experience, specializing in the full range of media content production and management, as well as SEO and social media engagement best practices, for both Cabling Installation & Maintenance magazine and its website He currently provides trade show, company, executive and field technology trend coverage for the ICT structured cabling, telecommunications networking, data center, IP physical security, and professional AV vertical market segments. Email: [email protected]

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