Keysight Delivers New Electrical-Optical-Electrical System Design Workflow with VPI Optical Link


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Keysight Technologies, Inc. a leading technology company that helps enterprises, service providers and governments accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world, announced a new simulation workflow capability that seamlessly connects PathWave Advanced Design System (ADS) with VPI Design Suite from VPIphotonics, enabling designers to predict the signal integrity of Electrical-Optical-Electrical data links.

Data centers transport vast amounts of data using electrical Ethernet connections, however with the growing demand for greater throughput, many connections are moving to optical fiber and more sophisticated modulation schemes to deliver increased capacity. As a result, design margins and complex equalization are needed to maintain data link performance.

Keysight’s new VPI Optical Link solution in PathWave ADS simulates and optimizes design parameters concurrently in electrical and optical domains eliminating key barriers to developing high performance hardware products. It can predict the data link BER (Bit Error Rate) and understand how electrical design choices will interplay with optical design choices to deliver a reliable system design.

“We’re excited to partner with VPIphotonics to provide an industry-leading solution to the market. It seamlessly combines both of our companies’ simulation domain expertise to provide a powerful and comprehensive solution to a real customer challenge,” said Tom Lillig, general manager of the PathWave Software and Solution team at Keysight Technologies.

The defining technology advancement in this new solution is the electro-optical workflow which can process millions of bits in minutes for accurate BER prediction. As a result of this rapid simulation, system architects can investigate link performance characteristics with varied fiber lengths, effects of distortion/dispersion, optical drive level, electrical transmitter and receiver equalization settings, as well as electrical channel design including trace routing and the design of PCB vias.

“Engineers have a wide variety of constraints when developing optical interconnect solutions for intra and inter datacenter applications,” stated André Richter, general manager of VPIphotonics. “With this new seamless design flow linking simulations of the electronic circuits at the transceivers with simulations of the optical fiber link, we are proud to jointly deliver a unique solution that offers the investigation and optimization of overall system performance.”

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