IEEE forms study group to explore next-generation IEEE 802.3 BASE-T

July 23, 2012
New IEEE 802.3 group to examine new networking requirements in server connectivity and other applications.

IEEE has announced the formation of the IEEE 802.3 Next-Generation BASE-T Study Group. The new group is designed to measure industry interest and needs in the next generation of the IEEE 802.3 BASE-T family of technologies for Ethernet transmission over twisted-pair cabling.

“As high-density 10GBASE-T switches become more common in data center and enterprise environments, the approval of this study group to review the next-generation BASE-T technology is timely," said a representative for IEEE. "A next-generation BASE-T technology will complement the rich and diverse higher-speed Ethernet interfaces, ensuring that next-generation switch and server application requirements are addressed.”

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According to IEEE, widely deployed for physical-layer connectivity in data centers, IEEE 802.3 BASE-T represents the highest-volume Ethernet port type today. IEEE 802.3 BASE-T technologies typically utilize server-uplink data rates of Gigabit Ethernet and 10 Gigabit Ethernet today, but platform transitions and systems innovation on all fronts are driving new networking requirements.

“Because of the ability of current IEEE 802.3 BASE-T technologies to interoperate with legacy versions via the standard’s ‘autonegotiation’ feature and thereby support cost-effective infrastructure upgrades, extension to 40 Gigabit Ethernet and higher speeds will be required in coming years,” comments Bill Woodruff, chair of the IEEE 802.3 Next-Generation BASE-T Study Group and associate product line director with Broadcom.

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Woodruff added, “IEEE 802.3 BASE-T continues to be one of the most successful technologies within the greater IEEE 802.3 family, and our new study group will gauge the timing and needs of extending the standard to support industry needs for server connectivity and other applications.”

“The formation of an IEEE 802.3 study group occurs when there is interest in developing a request to initiate an IEEE 802.3 Ethernet standards-development project,” concludes David Law, chair of the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet Working Group and distinguished engineer with HP Networking. “One of the reasons that IEEE 802.3 BASE-T has proven to be such a compelling technology over the years is because it frees companies to upgrade their networks strategically and cost-efficiently. That benefit of the standard is increasingly valuable, given the bandwidth demands and cost pressures that network managers today face.”

Interested individuals are invited to contribute to the new IEEE 802.3 Next-Generation BASE-T Study Group. For more information, please visit

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