NeoPhotonics Corporation (NYSE: NPTN), a leading designer and manufacturer of photonic integrated circuit, or PIC, based modules and subsystems for bandwidth-intensive, high speed communications networks, today announced a small form factor, narrow-linewidth, micro-Integrated Tunable Laser Assembly (micro-ITLA) technology.
NeoPhotonics builds upon its field-proven technology in creating this new generation of laser, which is designed to reduce the footprint by more than a factor of three and reduce power consumption compared to current generation ITLAs. The micro-ITLA is also intended to outperform current generation narrow-linewidth lasers in both linewidth and output optical power. This micro-ITLA utilizes NeoPhotonics PIC technology, which allows the integration of many active and passive photonic functions within single chip elements. The NeoPhotonics micro-ITLA is designed to be compliant to the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) implementation agreement.
The demand for bandwidth continues to grow at a rapid pace. Deployments of 100 Gbps networks utilizing advanced modulation techniques and coherent detection are increasingly preferred by carriers as these technologies provide improved signal quality and allow for longer spans in metro and long-haul “backbone” networks; thus lowering the overall cost of transporting high-bandwidth data from one place to another. The narrow-linewidth tunable laser is a key element in coherent optical communications systems. Much like tuning to a signal in a radio receiver, coherent detection uses a narrow-linewidth laser (local oscillator) tuned to the transmitter optical frequency. Laser linewidth must be in the range of a few hundred kilohertz to avoid penalties to signal-to-noise ratio and system performance.
“NeoPhotonics is one the few companies that can design and manufacture precision tunable lasers with linewidth suitably narrow for coherent network applications. In fact, we became the industry’s largest supplier of narrow-linewidth tunable lasers in 2012,” said Tim Jenks, Chairman and CEO of NeoPhotonics. “In the micro-ITLA we utilize our PIC technology to minimize the device size and power consumption, while providing our customers with the device performance and production capabilities they need to capture the growth that is apparent in the 100G market space.”