Molex, Cisco join industry group developing Double-Density QSFP Interfaces

Molex, Cisco join industry group developing Double-Density QSFP Interfaces

Technology News |
By Graham Prophet

According to the consortium site,, “QSFP-DD is a new module and cage/connector system similar to current QSFP, but with an additional row of contacts providing for an eight lane electrical interface… to enable high-speed solutions. It expands on the QSFP pluggable form factor, a widely adopted four-lane electrical interface 2×1 stacked integrated cage / connector. Cage design optimizations and module case optimizations enable thermal support of at least 7W per module. QSFP-DD electrical interfaces will employ eight lanes that operate up to 25 Gbps NRZ modulation or 50 Gbps PAM4 modulation, providing solutions up to 200 Gbps or 400 Gbps aggregate; QSFP-DD can enable up to 14.4 Tbps aggregate bandwidth in a single switch slot.”

“By quadrupling aggregate switch bandwidth while maintaining port density, QSFP-DD will support continuing growth in network bandwidth demand and datacentre traffic. Systems designed with QSFP-DD modules will be backwards compatible, allowing them to support existing QSFP modules and provide flexibility for end users and system designers.”


Molex and Cisco have announced their participation in the MSA aiming for up to 10X bandwidth to be supported on the same port. The goal is ensuring mechanical, electrical, thermal and signal-integrity interoperability for module components produced by different manufacturers. Members of the MSA are developing operating parameters, signal transmission speed goals, and protocols for QSFP-DD… with a cear path to future 2×100 GbE and 400 GbE interfaces. By maintaining the same port density per rack unit, customers can speed up networks without redesigning the architecture.


“With a clear trend towards hyper-converged fabrics, customers need an aligned switch silicon and optics roadmap,” said Luca Cafiero, senior vice president and general manager at Cisco. “Global IP traffic is expected to reach 1.4 zettabytes next year, reflecting a CAGR from 2012 to 2017 of 23 percent. All players involved in network architecture will have to step up their game to meet this demand, and the MSA for QSFP DD is a big step in that direction. We are confident that, with industry leaders like Molex, we can help to lead the development of high-speed technology that will be broadly used throughout the industry.”


The latest Cisco Cloud Scale ASIC technology enables cost effective 36 port 100 GbE in a single chip design. Assuming an 18 months silicon innovation cycle these bandwidth capabilities will double and quadruple in the next 2-3 years. Having a QSFP-DD with a roadmap towards 2x100G and 400G interfaces will allow for close alignment of switch ASIC and optics capability.


“The need for high-speed solutions is unmistakable,” said Scott Sommers, group product manager, Molex. “This MSA is a critical part of meeting that need, and Molex will contribute its leadership in complete I/O solutions — including connectors, copper cable and fibre optics. ”







If you enjoyed this article, you will like the following ones: don't miss them by subscribing to :    eeNews on Google News


Linked Articles