By Acacia Communications | Posted on March 17, 2022
Ethernet speeds continue to climb up to serve the bandwidth needs by hyperscale data centers. Today, IM/DD has been extensively used in intra-data center interconnects for its lower cost/power and simplicity while coherent technology has been widely used in metro data center interconnects for its higher capacity/l and capability to compensate various link impairments. With the recent advances in DSP and photonic integration, the complexity and power consumption of coherent systems have been decreasing rapidly. As the data rate moves from 100G/l to 200G/l and beyond, the question arises as to whether IM/DD can continue to scale or migration of coherent technology into intra-data center networks is inevitable.
Mark Heimbuch shares his view on IM/DD vs. coherent detection for intra data center applications.