OFC: OFS, VIAVI, collaborate on bismuth-doped fibre amplifier

Created March 4, 2022
Technologies and Products


Furukawa Electric Company subsidiary OFS, has collaborated with Viavi Solutions on what the companies claim is the first test and measurement focused amplifier based on a new OFS bismuth-doped fibre. OFS says the fibre is the first to be produced at sufficient volumes to meet growing demand for 400 GbE and 800 GbE test applications worldwide. Doping allows for light amplification via stimulated emission, but achieving efficient, broad wavelength amplification that supports the entire O-band has been a challenge.

The advantages of Bismuth doping and amplifier design include: the capability to broadly amplify in the O-band (1260-1360 nm) occupied by 100 GbE, 400 GbE and 800 GbE; and production of fibre at scale as the host matrix is almost the same as single-mode fibre. VIAVI and OFS collaborated closely during development of the mOFA-C1, including design, prototype and feasibility, with particular focus on maximising the gain, power and wavelength coverage to amplify the above signals with a single amplifier. This new fibre dramatically simplified integration into VIAVI’s existing C- and L-band amplifier manufacturing processes.

Communications and cloud networks are experiencing aggressive growth in demand, forcing providers to upgrade speeds faster than previously forecasted. Transport networks and hyperscale data centres are rapidly introducing 400 GbE, and the development of 800 GbE is accelerating. Among the many challenges being encountered are physical limitations impacting volume manufacturing and the ability of test systems to deliver the required optical power in the O-band.

“It has been almost 30 years since the launch of Erbium-doped fibres, which began the current era of fibre amplification,” said David DiGiovanni, CTO and president of OFS Labs. “At OFC 2022, OFS is pleased to introduce the next milestone: Bismuth-doped fibre.”

“We are excited to work with OFS to launch the ecosystem for Bismuth-doped fibre, a new inflection point in optical network technology,” said Tom Fawcett, vice president and general manager, Lab & Production, VIAVI. “Based on our engagement with network equipment manufacturers and service providers, the industry needs to continually improve the ability to manufacture technologies up to 800 GbE. Bismuth fibre stands ready to meet that demand.”

OFS will showcase Bismuth fibre at Booth #3939, and VIAVI will showcase the MAP bismuth-doped fibre amplifier (mOFA-C1) at Booth #3727.

For more information, visit www.viavisolutions.com



This article was written
by Peter Dykes

Peter Dykes is a independent telecoms and technology journalist who has over that last 30 years written for a wide range of B2B publications and companies. A former BT engineer, he specialises in networks and associated support systems. He is currently Editor of Optical Connections.