Gazettabyte – Enabling coherent optics down to 2km short-reach links

By Acacia | Posted on January 24, 2018

Chris DoerrChris Doerr admits he was a relative latecomer to silicon photonics. But after making his first silicon photonics chip, he was hooked. Nearly a decade later and Doerr is associate vice president of integrated photonics at Acacia Communications. The company uses silicon photonics for its long-distance optical coherent transceivers.

Acacia Communications made headlines in May after completing an initial public offering (IPO), raising approximately $105 million for the company. Technology company IPOs have become a rarity and are not always successful. On its first day of trading, Acacia’s shares opened at $29 per share and closed just under $31.

Although investors may not have understood the subtleties of silicon photonics or coherent DSP-ASICs for that matter, they noted that Acacia has been profitable since 2013. But as becomes clear in talking to Doerr, silicon photonics plays an important role in the company’s coherent transceiver design, and its full potential for coherent has still to be realised.

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