Test and measurement technology companies Coherent Solutions and SmarTest Electronics, have announced an exclusive partnership and supply agreement to develop integrated electro-optical test and measurement solutions for high volume 400G transceiver testing. The partnership gives Coherent Solutions exclusive access to SmarTest’s next-generation Bit Error Rate Testers (BERT) and Pulse Pattern Generators (PPG) which will initially be used in single-platform test systems for 400G transceivers.
With the successful launch of the first PXI BERT for 100G transceiver test in early 2020, the companies are currently targeting a Q4 2020 launch for the world’s first PXI-based PAM4 BERTs, capable of running 4 or 8 lanes at 25Gbaud with onboard forward error correction.
“We’ve talked extensively to customers and looked at test and measurement solutions on the market, and it’s clear that manufacturers are looking for simpler, integrated, and cost-effective test and measurement solutions for transceiver testing,” says Andy Stevens, CEO of Coherent Solutions. “By extending our electrical test capability with SmarTest’s technology and using our existing range of PXI optical test modules, our integrated PXI test systems for 400G transceivers will simplify integration, increase test throughput, and reduce the system footprint which will dramatically lower the cost of test for transceiver manufacturers.”
Federico Lipparini, co-founder of SmarTest says, “this partnership gives us a real opportunity to focus on the current 400G and 800G PAM-4 development while we benefit from Coherent Solutions’ broad product portfolio and market reach. We are focused on delivering innovative NRZ and PAM-4 test solutions for optical transceiver testing which requires high channel density and pristine signal integrity. Designing on the PXI platform allows us to deliver the complete electrical and optical solution in a reliable, modular and cost-effective form factor”.
The companies say research is projecting shipments of 400G transceivers to increase significantly from 2020 to 2024 as network operators and data centres race to meet demand for bandwidth from 5G deployment and increasingly data-hungry users.
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