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Intel has developed 1.6Tbps MXC optical cables for deployment in data centres and supercomputers, which it claims transmits 1.6Tera-bits per second, 800Gbps in each direction.
Based on silicon photonics interconnect technology that combines optical networking with silicon components, the new MXC connector technology has been developed in collaboration with Corning, US Conec, TE Connectivity , Molex and others.
To be launched in the second half of the year, the high-speed cables are part of the chip maker’s Rack Scale Architecture data centre initiative, aimed at dividing individual servers into pools of compute, storage and memory at the rack level, with silicon photonics connecting them.
The new cables use light and lasers to transfer data between servers, storage, networking and other computing resources and offer a 300m range, compared to copper offering a limited range.
US Conec has already started manufacturing parts for the new connector, which will be sold to cable companies.
Reducing component costs by merging power supplies and fans in a data centre, the cables could also support existing protocols such as InfiniBand, ethernet and PCI-Express.
Currently, Microsoft and the Facebook’s Open Compute Project are trailing Intel’s MXC-based cables.