NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- Mindspeed Technologies Inc. here today announced what the company claims is the world's first serializer/deserializer transceiver that supports the emerging Ten Gigabit Fibre Channel standard.
The M27207 Quad SkyRail chip from Mindspeed is a four-port, CMOS-based device that also supports other emerging networking and data-storage protocols, such as Fibre Channel, Gigabit Ethernet, Ten Gigabit Ethernet, and InfiniBand.
Running at transmission speeds from 1- to 3.1875-gigabits-per-second (Gbps) on the same four-channel device, the M27207 is especially suited for high-speed backplane applications, said Elie Massabki, director of marketing for the Broadband Internetworking Systems business unit at Mindspeed. The Newport Beach-based company is a spin-off of Conexant Systems Inc.
With the chip, Mindspeed also hopes to get a jump on the new Ten Gigabit Fibre Channel market. This technology will enable equipment in storage-area networks (SANs) to transmit data at speeds of about 10-Gbps. At present, the current Fibre Channel standards enable systems in SANs to support transmission speeds of 1.0625- and 2.125-Gbps.
"Ten Gigabit Fibre Channel is still in the early stages," Massabki said. "In the next 12 months, we will see boxes that are fully-compliant with this standard," he said in an interview with SBN.
The M27207 chip was originally designed by HotRail Inc., a San Jose-based supplier of high-speed switch fabric and backplane channel technology. Conexant of Newport Beach acquired the HotRail last year.
The company's transceiver line competes against products from several companies, including Broadcom, PMC-Sierra, Texas Instruments, Velio, Vitesse, and others.
Mindspeed's chip supports all line-interface standards in the market today. Based on the company's Flexiclock architecture, the chip solves the challenging timing problems in supporting multiple line rates and standards, said John Giddings, product marketing manager for Mindspeed.
The Flexiclock architecture also offers chip-to-chip channel alignment, which simplifies the design of 10-, 40-, and 80-Gbps systems. It also simplifies system design by providing both SSTL-2 and HSTL interface options.
It also makes use of the so-called "Amplif-Eye" signal conditioning circuitry. The technology optimizes the reach over long traces and connectors, which makes it ideal for high-speed serial backplane applications.
In total, the M27207 operates from 1- to 12-Gbps in terms of aggregate bandwidth. The device integrates four transmitters and receivers, a clock-and-data recovery (CDR) unit, 8B/10B encoders and decoders, termination resistors, FIFO elastic buffers, rate matching, and channel-to-channel and chip-to-chip synchronization circuitry.
The M27027 is available in four speed grades: 1- to 1.25-Gbps (M27027-1), 1-to 2.5-Gbps (M27027-2), 1- to 3.125-Gbps (M27027-3), and 1- to 3.1875-Gbps (M27027-4). The M27027-4 is priced at $79.00 each in quantities of 1,000. Samples and evaluation boards are available, with production slated for September.