Exhibiting an External Laser Source for Co-Packaged Optics at OFC2022
- Contributing to the realization of next-generation network switch servers in data centers -

March 7, 2022

  • For the first time in the world, Furukawa Electric will exhibit an external light source (ELS) for Co-Packaged Optics (CPO) at OFC2022.
  • Sample shipment of pigtailed-QSFP ELS will be launched from April 2022.
  • Contributing to the realization of high-capacity data communication and a highly efficient energy society.

Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd. (Head Office: 2-6-4 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Keiichi Kobayashi) developed an ELS to be adopted to CPO required for the next generation networks switch servers in data centers for the first time in the world (note 1)and will exhibit the ELS at OFC2022, the largest international conference in the optical communication market.


There has been a strong demand to expand the bandwidth for both hyperscale data centers that process big data and edge data centers that realize low latency for Beyond 5G. In accordance with this market trend, power saving has been a challenge for network switch servers. As of today, the bandwidth of switch ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) reaches 25.6 Tb/s. It is difficult for the existing server architecture using pluggable optical transceivers to support a wider bandwidth of 51.2 Tb/s in the next generation. Hence, it has been expected to adopt CPO as a new server architecture.
CPO has a unique packaging structure where high-density silicon photonics transceivers are mounted together with a switch ASIC on the same substrate. In order to expand the bandwidth of switch ASIC, the power consumption is increased, resulting in higher heat Therefore, if a light source, which is a compound semiconductor laser, is integrated to a silicon photonics optical transceiver, it will be operated in a high temperature environment, which will deteriorate its characteristics and also affect to its reliability. An ELS can resolve this issue because it is connected to a front panel where there is a lower ambient temperature.


For the first time in the world, we will exhibit an ELS employing the standard QSFP (Quad Small-Form Factor Pluggable) which has been widely used for pluggable optical transceivers in the optical communication market. The QSFP ELS supports the functionality of hot pluggable that automatically operates by inserting it into a cage located on a rack. The QSFP ELS has a pigtailed 8-channel PMF (polarization-maintaining fiber) cable in order to supply linearly polarized CW (continuous wave) laser outputs for a CPO transceiver and a standard MPO connector is attached to the fiber end. We have prepared two options for wavelength allocation:1311 nm (O-band) x 8 channels, and 4-λ CWDM (1271nm, 1291nm, 1311nm, 1331nm) x 2 channels. The operating case temperature range is as wide as 0 ºC to 55 ºC. Fiber-coupled optical power is >100 mW per channel. The sample shipment of the QSFP ELS will be launched from April 2022. The ELS utilizes the high-power and wavelength-selected compound semiconductor laser technologies and optical packaging technologies that Furukawa Electric has been building over the past 20 years.

SN®-MT connector: Senko Advanced Components

Fig. 3 Photograph of pigtailed-QSFP ELS

Target specifications

Parameter Specification
Number of channels 8
Operating case temperature 0 ºC to 55 ºC
Wavelength allocation Option 1: 1311nm (O-band) x 8
Option 2: 4-λ CWDM x 2
Output power >100mW/channel
Polarization Extinction Ration >20 dB (Slow axis)

(note 1)According to our research

Furukawa Electric Group’s efforts towards the SDGs

Based on the “Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)” adopted by the United Nations, the Furukawa Electric Group has formulated the “Furukawa Electric Group Vision 2030” which sets the year 2030 as its target and is advancing efforts with the aim to “Build a sustainable world and make people’s life safe, peaceful and rewarding, Furukawa Electric Group will create solutions for the new generation of global infrastructure combining information, energy and mobility.” Toward the achievement of our Vision 2030, we will take open, agile, and innovative approaches to promote ESG management that that aims to increase corporate value over the medium to long term and will contribute to the achievement of the SDGs.