AppliedMicro Low Power 10GBASE-T PHY Provides Data Centers with Immunity to Electromagnetic Interference
Cost-effective 10Gbps Ethernet links are rapidly becoming critical in enterprise and data center applications. The 10GBASE-T technology provides up to 100m of data center cabling and offers a lower cost alternative to top-of-rack and short-reach optical solutions. A recent report by The Linley Group expects the 10GBASE-T market growth to accelerate in 2011 and could nearly double in annual revenue over the next several years. The growth of this technology has been inhibited due to lack of low-power and robust solutions, and AppliedMicro’s Triveni family is designed to address both issues.
“The market for 10GBASE-T designs is primed for high-volume growth as makers of data center systems anticipate the broad adoption to higher network speeds over existing copper cables and connections,” said Jag Bolaria, senior analyst for the Linley Group. “AppliedMicro enters the field with a 40-nm low power quad and dual 10GBASE-T devices. The company differentiates it’s silicon with a DSP technique that compensates for radio-interference, which is an impairment at 10Gbps.”
With the attenuation of a 10Gbps signal over media such as a Cat6A cable, even a small amount of RF interference can overwhelm the input signal at the receiver, making it potentially impossible for the DSP to correctly identify and reconstruct the signal. This results in dropped links for the duration of the interference. In the absence of EMI cancellation techniques, 10GBASE-T PHYs go to “fast retrain” to re-establish a dropped link within 30 milliseconds. This results in the loss of Ethernet packets, making it unsuitable for a large number of applications. AppliedMicro’s Triveni family is addressing this problem by employing patent pending EMI cancellation techniques that would prevent a 10GBASE-T link from dropping in the presence of RF interference created by overhead air traffic communications, television signals and walkie talkies.
“10GBaseT adoption has been limited not merely by power per port but by the robustness issues surrounding past generation PHYs. This is due to interference from walkie-talkies and other wireless devices that operate within the signal bandwidth of a 10GBASE-T receiver,” said Sandeep Gupta, General Manager of the Transport and Datacom Business Unit at AppliedMicro. “AppliedMicro’s patent pending EMI cancellation architecture is expected to resolve this serious issue while maintaining high performance and offering a very versatile matrix of features.”
The Triveni family offers an industry-leading power dissipation of approximately 3.5W at full 10Gbps rate while operating in 100m mode on a CAT6A cable. Dynamic power scaling further reduces the power for shorter cable reaches and intra-rack applications. The industry’s smallest footprint of 21x21 mm for the dual and 27x27 mm for the quad make Triveni solutions ideal for network interface card/host bus adapter (NIC/HBA), LAN-on-Motherboard (LOM) or high-density switch card applications.
In 2007, a key U.S. Environmental Protection Agency study, Report to Congress on Server and Data Center Energy Efficiency, identified significant growth in the number of data center servers and predicted that energy use by servers and the supporting infrastructure would double over five years. Energy costs for businesses are increasing dramatically and data center usage places a significant strain on the existing power grid. AppliedMicro offers a complete suite of energy-efficient modes in the Triveni family, including WOL, EEE and link power detect modes to help alleviate data center power usage. Depending on link utilization and system requirements the Triveni PHY can save significant amounts of power. Smart MAC offload features can power down other components on the card to further reduce system power.
Data security is becoming increasingly important as more and more sensitive data gets sent over networks as the industry shifts to virtualization and cloud computing. Triveni includes a flexible MACsec engine to protect, validate and authenticate data while providing vital statistics to the system, which is important for ensuring the security for the links that transmit sensitive data.
Samples of the Triveni family will be available in Q3 2010.