Semiconductor Equipment

Demo serves as test of 800G interoperability for data centers

17 November 2022

Driven by cloud-based applications, the work-from-home trend and the growth of the internet of things, along with a new wave of artificial intelligence- and machine learning-powered applications, the demand for higher bandwidth, increased throughput and low latency continues to grow at a rapid pace.

Equipment manufacturers have responded with the rollout of flexible multi-rate products to support high-speed Ethernet devices, while service providers and hyperscale data centers are meeting the needs of those devices through multi-rate networking infrastructure solutions. Moving to link capacities of 800G and beyond is within reach, and a key component of that transition is equipment with the capacity for high-density testing and the flexibility for multi-rate validation.

The Sprient B2 800G Appliance was leveraged as part of a recent 800G interoperability test. Source: Spirent CommunicationsThe Sprient B2 800G Appliance was leveraged as part of a recent 800G interoperability test. Source: Spirent CommunicationsAs Electronics360 reported earlier this year, test and assurance solutions provider Spirent Communications has been keeping pace with those trends with products like the B2 800G Appliance. More recently, the company reported that the device was leveraged as part of a public demonstration that served as a test of 800G interoperability in data center environments.

Held during Nokia’s SReXperts 22 Americas event in mid-September, the demo featured 1.6Tbps of data generated by two Nokia 7750 SR series routers using 800G QSFP-DD DR8 optical transceivers. The service routing platform was powered by Nokia’s FP5 silicon — something Spirent calls the first network processor silicon for high-performance routing to enable a successful transition to the 800G ecosystem.

Each of the four ports of the Spirent B2 800G support 1x800G along with 2x400G, 4x200G and 8x100G in 112Gbs PAM4 modes, as well as 2x200G and 8x50G in 56Gbps PAM4 modes. The appliance also offers support link training (LT) for each of those speeds, as well as auto negotiation (AN) for speeds of 400G and below.

For its part, Nokia offers a full suite of 800G-enabled systems, scaling from line cards with 36x 800G QSFP-DD to fixed systems with 36x 800G and 48x 800G QSFP-DD, including many smaller steps in between to accommodate different scales of power, capacity and economics.

“For today’s IP networks to enable tomorrow’s applications, faster is better but it’s not enough,” said Ken Kutzler, VP of IP routing hardware at Nokia. “These networks must also be deterministic, secure, efficient and consumable. Our high-profile demonstration with Spirent helped validate the market readiness of our FP5 silicon – the heart of Nokia’s IP service routing platforms – to deliver the right foundation to ensure IP networks can efficiently scale, evolve and stay ahead of shifting market demands.”

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