Transceiver IC supports optical USB

June 26, 2015 // By Peter Clarke
Silicon Line GmbH (Munich, Germany) has developed a USB transceiver IC that can be used to implement active optical cables for USB 3.0 at up to 5Gbps and USB 3.1 at up to 10 Gbps.

The SL86050 IC contains both a vertical cavity surface emitting laser driver and a transimpedance amplifier designed to process USB 3 signals. The device takes its power directly from the USB connector and also processes low frequency periodic signaling information. The SL86050 is available as a bare die.

Silicon Line also provides ICs for optical HDMI 2.0 that, together with the SL86050, enables a long, thin and light cable to connect a PC to a headset. This gives much greater freedom of movement to the person using the headset.

Raising funds

Recently Silicon Line raised €6.2 million (about $6.9 million) from new and existing investors. The company said it plans to use the money to ramp up volume manufacturing of optical sub-assemblies at its facility in Hasselt, Belgium.

The company's established products support HDMI 1.4 and 2.0, USB 3.1 up to 10 Gbps, DisplayPort 1.3 and MIPI D-PHY for cameras.

"The worldwide market for our products is enormous and the capital infusion will accelerate our growth in the on-going industry-shift towards higher communication speeds where optical is the obvious way to go," said Ruud van der Linden, CEO of Silicon Line, in a statement.

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