Fulcrum, Luxtera Target 40G

Fulcrum Microsystems and Luxtera to demonstrate first 40-Gigabit data center Ethernet switch platform

November 12, 2007

2 Min Read

RENO, Nev. -- Fulcrum Microsystems® and Luxtera Inc. today announced the availability to OEMs of a low-latency, 40-Gigabit Ethernet switch/router reference design for datacenter backbone applications. The reference design is composed of a card developed by Luxtera using its nanophotonic “Blazar” 40-Gigabit optical active cable that fits into the Fulcrum “Reno” low-latency, 10-Gigabit Ethernet router platform for datacenter applications.

The reference design will be on display at the upcoming SuperComputing Coference (SC|07), which runs from Nov. 12-15 in Reno, NV, in two separate demonstrations—one in Fulcrum’s booth, #2161, and the other as part of a connectivity demo between Luxtera’s two booths, #384 and #94.

Luxtera’s Blazar is the industry’s first 40-Gigabit optical active cable (OAC). Blazar is based on the company’s CMOS photonics technology, and combines the benefits of optical modules and copper cables to cost-effectively deliver high bandwidth interconnect, reaching up to 300 meters. Blazar binds four 10-Gigabit Ethernet channels into one 40 Gbps high-density QSFP connector, and offers the first 40 Gigabit-capable Ethernet interconnect solution on the market. By utilizing a QSFP form factor, customers can quadruple bandwidth density per shelf.

It is an option for the “Reno” reference design, a 1RU switch/router system that uses Fulcrum’s FocalPoint® FM2224 low-latency switch, or Fulcrum’s FM4224 low-latency router to offer 24 full-rate 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports. With the Luxtera mezzanine card, Reno is configured to feature three 40 Gbps QSFP ports and 12 CX4 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports, all running at full line rate with less than 300 nanoseconds of latency for L3 routing.

The configuration is well suited for clustered storage or high-performance computing applications as Fulcrum’s low latency switching offers better latency performance and larger network sizes than the competing InfiniBand solutions.

“The bandwidth and low latency offered by the Reno platform with Blazar means datacenter Ethernet can now be used to build networks supporting thousands of processors or disks with the inherent economic advantages that are expected from Ethernet,” said Mike Zeile, vice president of marketing for Fulcrum Microsystems. “Adding Luxtera’s capabilities to our recently launched low-latency routing platform shows how quickly and completely datacenter Ethernet solutions are coming together.”

Fulcrum Microsystems Inc.

Luxtera Inc.

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