Teledyne LeCroy Intros PAM4 Tester

The company introduced automated testing of 56 Gbit/s PAM4 transmission. Separately, the company is demonstrating the next-generation storage communication standard SAS 4.0.

January 31, 2017

3 Min Read

Santa Clara, Calif. -- Teledyne LeCroy announced the addition of fully automated transmitter testing for 56-Gbit/s, PAM4-based interfaces. The new QPHY-56G-PAM4 option adds standards-specific measurement capabilities to a measurement portfolio that already includes PAM4 signal analysis capabilities.

Separately, the company is conducting what it claims are the world's first demonstrations of Serial Attached SCSI 4.0 (SAS), the new enterprise storage standard.

PAM4 signaling has become a critical enabling technology for next-generation communications links, the company noted. PAM4 links operating at 28 Gbaud enable a 56 Gbit/s raw data rate on each lane, with multi-lane configurations offering aggregate throughputs of 100G, 200G, and 400G. These interfaces are seeing rapid standardization by OIF and IEEE, defining a challenging set of specific test requirements for designers and test engineers working in this ecosystem.

Teledyne LeCroy’s QPHY-56G-PAM4 automates testing to the OIF CEI-56G-PAM4 and relevant PAM4-based IEEE 802.3 interface standards. Measurements include eye diagrams, eye widths and heights, linearity, signal to noise and distortion (SNDR), transition time, linear fit pulse peak, and equalizer measurements, among others.

QPHY-56G-PAM4 will initially be available with transmitter test coverage for the OIF CEI-56G-VSR-PAM4 interface standard (both host- and module-output test points). Coverage will expand shortly to include –MR and –LR variants of OIF-CEI-56G-PAM4, as well as IEEE 802.3bs and 802.3cd Ethernet standards.

Teledyne LeCroy’s QualiPHY automated compliance test solution platform is designed to reduce the time, effort, and specialized knowledge needed to perform compliance testing on high-speed serial buses. QualiPHY guides the user through each test setup with connection diagrams, performs each measurement in accordance with the relevant test procedure, compares each measured value with the applicable specification limits, and fully documents all results.

QPHY-56G-PAM4 will be available on LabMaster 10Zi-A oscilloscopes (note an instrument of at least 50 GHz bandwidth is required for compliance to some tests).

Meanwhile, the company is conducting demonstrations of Serial Attached SCSI 4.0 (SAS) at DesignCon 2017. SAS 4.0 doubles the effective bandwidth over the current 12Gbit/s SAS specification, while preserving backward compatibility to enable easier data center adoption.

The demo of SAS 4.0 operating at full 24 Gbit/s line rate over MiniSAS HD cabling "is evidence that key building blocks for the SAS ecosystem are reaching the market with the quality and reliability needed to enable a smooth roll-out of this new technology,” said Joe Mendolia, vice-president of marketing at Teledyne LeCroy’s Protocol Solutions Group.

The SAS 4.0 specification has completed letter ballot resolution and is expected to be published later in 2017, the company noted.

The Teledyne LeCroy exhibit will feature the Sierra T244 Protocol Analyzer platform, which the company claims is the first commercially available solution for testing and validating SAS 4.0 protocol.

Optimized for SAS wide port, Teledyne LeCroy’s Sierra T244 can analyze four lanes of SAS 4.0 protocol traffic simultaneously with complete visibility into link training and the dynamic equalization process. A complement of hardware based triggering tools are available to pinpoint protocol traffic of interest. The SAS4 protocol analysis suite provides comprehensive decoding of SSP, SMP and STP traffic, the company said. Common protocol errors are flagged automatically including forward error correction (FEC) errors and incomplete commands. The Sierra T244 platform is available with full SAS 4.0 support and up to 128GB of recording memory. Configurations are also available with SAS 3.0 (12 Gbit/s) support that are upgradeable to 24Gbit/s in the future.

The Sierra T244 is available for immediate shipment.

Teledyne LeCroy

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