Gennum, Meritec partner to drive serial 10G over copper

February 5, 2008 -- At DesignCon 2008, Gennum will conduct a technology demo that combines its advanced clock and data recovery (CDR) solutions with Meritec's cable technology to drive a 10-Gbit/sec signal serially over 30 AWG copper cable.

February 5, 2008 -- Highlighting the potential to significantly drive down the cost of transmitting data at 10-Gbit/sec and beyond, Gennum Corp. announced that it will conduct a technology demonstration that combines its advanced clock and data recovery (CDR) solutions with Meritec's cable technology to drive a 10-Gbit/sec signal serially over low-cost 30-gauge America wire gauge (AWG) copper cable.

Showing how Gennum CDR products can be used to propagate error-free signals at high data rates across low-cost cable, the companies say the demonstration proves the ability for the technology to achieve data rates as high as 40 Gbit/sec when four lanes of data are transmitted in parallel.

The solution will be on display this week in Meritec's booth #625 at the DesignCon 2008 conference in Santa Clara, CA.

"As data rates move to 10 Gbit/sec and higher, enterprise users require low-cost cabling solutions that enable maximum signal integrity between servers, switches and storage equipment," comments Bharat Tailor, product marketing director of Gennum's Analog and Mixed Signal Products group. "Until now, users have had to use expensive optical solutions in order to enable high-speed communications beyond a few meters. CDR solutions reset the jitter and crosstalk budgets, enabling maximum signal integrity at longer distances using low-cost copper cable."

"As a company at the forefront of high bandwidth performance, Meritec collaborates with signal integrity experts like Gennum to increase data rates without increasing cost for customers," adds John Sawdy, manager of signal integrity engineering for Meritec. "Our work with Gennum proves that thin, low-cost copper cable can be used to transmit 10 Gbit/sec per lane at distances never before thought possible."

Jitter is a key barrier to deployment of various high data rate standards, such as quad data rate (QDR) Infiniband, 8-Gbit/sec Fibre Channel, and 10-Gbit/sec Ethernet. Gennum says its signal integrity expertise in areas such as equalizers and CDRs can be used to compensate for the transmission losses associated with copper cable, providing maximum jitter tolerance for error-free data transmission. According to the company, using thin copper cable minimizes cost and weight, and increases flexibility without increasing signal degradation and bit error rates (BER).

At DesignCon, the Gennum/Meritec demo will show a signal being transmitted across 8 meters (26 feet) of 30-gauge AWG cable. The exhibit implements Gennum CDRs on both the transmit and receive sides of the cable to ensure maximum signal integrity.

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