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40 Gigabit Ethernet Options Guideline

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When the IEEE introduced the 802.3ba Ethernet standard, this was in response to the increasing bandwidth demands facing data centers, paving the way for the introduction of 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s Ethernet operations. Believe it or not, the 40 Gigabit Ethernet era is already upon us. This text put together a brief overview of the current 40 Gigabit Ethernet optics types and form factors to aid in planning for future high-performance Ethernet needs.

40 Gigabit Ethernet Standards
The IEEE 802.3ba introduced the 40 Gigabit and 100 Gigabit Ethernet standards in 2010. 802.3ba is the designation given to the higher speed Ethernet task force which completed its work to modify the 802.3 standard to support speeds higher than 10 Gbit/s. This was the first time two different Ethernet speeds were specified in a single standard. The table below gives detailed specifications for 40 Gigabit Ethernet standards.

40 Gigabit Ethernet qsfp

40 Gigabit Ethernet QSFPTransceiver Options
As with any new generation of technology, one design goal was to leverage as much existing technology as possible. By minimizing the number of new interfaces, the interfaces become less expensive and take advantage of volume production and simplicity. To meet this design goal, there are three media modules will be used in the first generation of 40 Gigabit Ethernet: QSFP, CXP and CFP.

  • QSFP
    The Quad Small-Form-Factor Pluggable (QSFP) is similar in size to the CXP and provides four transmit and four receive lanes to support 40 Gigabit Ethernet applications for multimode fiber and copper today and may serve single-mode in the future. Another future role for the QSFP may be to serve 100 Gigabit Ethernet when lane rates increase to 25 Gbps.

QSFP

  • CXP
    The CXP transceiver features 12 transmit and 12 receive 10-Gbps lanes to support one 100 Gigabit Ethernet port, or up to three 40 Gigabit Ethernet ports. It can achieve rates up to 120 Gbps of pluggable data over 12 lanes in one assembly while enhanced-footprint connectors transmit signals over 10 lanes for up to 100 Gbps.

CXP

  • CFP
    The C Form-Factor Pluggable (CFP) is a new media module that was designed for longer-reach applications, with up to 24 watts of power dissipation. Its dense electrical connectors and integrated, riding heat sink enable a range of interfaces. This module is used for 40GBASE-SR4, 40GBASE-LR4.

CFP

40GbE Cabling Options

The most common 40GbE cable is the QSFP+ Cable. Such as QSFP direct attach copper cable (DAC) and QSFP active optical cable (AOC). Besides, the MPO/MTP cable is considered the best solution for 40GbE. Since MPO/MTP connectors have either 12 fibres or 24 fibres array, which can allow data transmission across multiple fibres simultaneously.

  • Direct Attach Copper Cable

Transmitting 40 GbE over short distances of parallel coaxial copper cabling (also referred to as twinax cabling) is accomplished using a special cabling assembly with four lanes of coaxial cabling (eight pairs). Four pairs each transmit 10 Gbps in one direction and four transmit 10 Gbps in the other direction for a total data rate of 40 Gbps. The two common DACs used in 40g Ethernet are QSFP to QSFP and QSFP to 4 SFP+ copper direct-attach cables.

40G DAC

  • Active Optical Cable

In the market, there are two common 40g fiber cable: QSFP to 4 SFP+ breakout AOC and QSFP to QSFP AOC. The former is a 4×10 Gb/s parallel active optical cable which transmits four separate streams of 10 Gb/s data over ribbon cables in a point-to-multipoint configuration. The cable contains a QSFP+ module on one end and four separate SFP+ modules at the other ends. The latter is a 40 Gb/s parallel active optical cable which transmits error-free parallel 4×10 Gb/s data over multimode fiber (MMF) ribbon cables.

40G AOC

  • MPO/MTP Cable

Current multi-mode optics standards for 40GbE optics use multiple 10Gbps lasers, simultaneously transmitting across multiple fiber strands to achieve high data rates. Because of the multi-lane nature of these optics, 40GbE multi-mode optics use a different style of fiber cabling, known as MPO or MTP cabling. As with 10GbE optics over multi-mode fiber, an OM3 or OM4 grade MMF is needed to be able to cover longer distances. For 40g Ethernet, we can use 8 fibers MPO/MTP harness cables or 12 fibers MPO/MTP trunk cables. The former is to directly connect a QSFP port to other 4 SFP+ ports. The latter is to directly connect one QSFP port to another QSFP port.

MPO/MTP cable

Related articles:

40G Network Connectivity Solutions
MTP Fiber Cable Solutions
Three Types MTP Harness Cables Used in Today’s Data Center

MTP Fiber Cable Solutions

MTP technology with multi-fiber connectors offers ideal conditions for setting up high-performance data networks in data centers to handle future requirements. This technology makes scaling and migration to network operation with 40/100 Gigabit Ethernet easier and more efficient. There are many MTP products in the market now, such as MTP fiber cables, MTP connectors, MTP cassettes and MTP adapters. This text will tell some MTP fiber cable solutions.

Introduction of MTP Fiber System
MTPThe MTP fiber system is a truly innovative group of products that moves fiber optic networks into the new millennium. MTP fiber and MTP assemblies take their name from the MTP “Multi-fiber Termination Push-on” connector, designed and introduced as a high performance version of the MPO connectors. MTP does interconnect with the MPO connectors. Each MTP contains 12 fibers or 6 duplex channels in a connector smaller than most duplex connections in use today. MTP connectors allow high-density connections between network equipment in telecommunication rooms. It is the same size of a SC connector but since it can accommodate 12 fibers, it provides up to 12 times the density, thereby offering savings in circuit card and rack space.

Types of MTP Fiber Cable
MTP fiber cables as an important part of the multi-fiber connection system, are designed for the reliable and quick operations in data centers. The obvious benefits of these cables are less space requirements and improved scalability, providing significant space and cost savings. The MTP cables are generally used for 40GbE and 100GbE network environment.

There are two configurations for MTP cable assemblies. One is the MTP connector to MTP connector trunk cable that connects a MTP cassette to another MTP cassette. Another is MTP connector to LC or other fiber connector. Which is often called the MTP harness cable.

  • MTP Trunk Cables
    MTP trunk cables, serve as a permanent link connecting the MTP modules to each other, are available in 12-144 counts. MTP patch cords will not be used until 40G and 100G active devices are employed (with MTP interface). The ends of MTP patch cords are terminated with the customer’s choice of 12-fiber or 24-fiber MTP connectors. These high count MTP assemblies are ideal for backbone and data center applications that require a high fiber count in a limited space.

MTP Trunk Cables

  • MTP Harness Cables
    MTP harness cables, also called MTP breakout cable or MTP fanout cable, are available in 8-144 counts. The MTP harness cables work from trunk backbone assemblies to fiber rack system in the high density backbone cabling. As terminated with MTP connectors on one end and standard LC/FC/SC/ST/MTRJ connectors (generally MTP to LC) on the other end, these cable assemblies can meet a variety of fiber cabling requirements.

MTP Harness Cables

MTP Fiber Cable for 40GbE and 100GbE
Parallel optics technology has become the transmission option of choice in many data centres and labs as it is able to support 10G, 40G, and 100G transmission. Since parallel optical communication uses multiple paths to transmit a signal at a greater data rate, factory terminated MTP connectors which have either 12 fibre or 24 fibre array will support this solution.

No matter for 40G or 100G transmission, there are two MTP cable solutions. One is with the MTP trunk cable, the other is with the MTP harness cable. QSFP to QSFP uses MTP trunk cable, and QSFP to 4 SFP+ uses MTP harness cable.

  • MTP Cable 40G Solutions
    For 40GbE, a 12-fiber MTP trunk cable is used. 10G is sent along each channel/fibre strand in a send and receive direction. Here 8 of 12 fibres providing 40G parallel transmission. Shown in the following picture.

MTP 40G
For 40GbE, a 12-fiber MTP to LC harness cable is used. The IEEE ratified the 40GBASE-SR4 (MTP interface) standard that uese 4 lanes at 10G SFP+ (LC interface) per lane over multimode fiber for a total of 8 fibers. Shown in the following picture.

MTP 40G

  • MTP Cable 100G Solutions
    For 100GbE, a 24-fiber MTP trunk cable is used. 10G is sent along each channel/fibre strand in a send and receive direction. Here 20 of 24 fibres providing 100G parallel transmission. Shown in the following picture.

MTP 100G
For 100GbE, a 24-fiber MTP to LC harness cable is used. The IEEE ratified the 100GBASE-SR10 (MTP interface) standard that uese 10 lanes at 10G SFP+ (LC interface) per lane over multimode fiber for a total of 20 fibers. Shown in the following picture.

MTP 100G

10G Ethernet Transmission MPO System Scheme

June 2002, IEEE802.3ae Task Force issued a series of fiber-based Gigabit Ethernet standard, commonly used in LAN 10GBase-SR/SW as example, 10GBase-SR/SW using serial transmission technology, that is, each core optical fiber only send or receive signals, so to achieve 10Gbps transmission requires at least two-core optical fiber.

MPO fiber optic deployment system has two solutions, one is to use the program with MPO module box, because MPO module box is with metal needles, therefore MPO trunk cables do not need to distinguish whether with a metal pin (Pin), most users tend to use MPO module case scenario; another option is to use MPO coupler, such programs must differentiate between MPO trunk cables with metal needles and without metal pin, the other two ends need to convert Fiber Jumper, so this program is rarely adoption.

According ANSI/TIA-568-C.3 standards are divided into the following two types of duplex Fiber jumpers:

Standard: (A-B)

MPO Fiber

Non-Standard: (A-A)

MPO

According ANSI/TIA-568-C.3 standard, MPO coupler is divided into Type A, Type B two types:

MPO Fiber Connector

MPO Fiber Optic

MPO fiber optic system according to the MPO trunk cables, MPO module boxes and jumpers of different types have different combinations of programs, mainly A, B, C three kinds of channel combination scheme

Method A: Using straight-through (Type A) of MPO trunk cables, Fiber Jumpers must be used at both ends of different models, Scenario A increases the complexity of the orders, it is not recommended to use programs A.

Method B: A fully cross (Type B) of MPO trunk cables, MPO module box must use two different types (Key Up-Key Up) and (Key Down-Key Down), another plan B does not support the ramp octave end face (singlemode fiber, so most manufacturers do not recommend using program B.

Method C: Using lines cross (Type C) of MPO trunk cables, MPO consistent at both ends of the module box (Type A) and standard jumpers, so Option C is the solution of choice for 10G Ethernet recommended.

There are some related MPO products from fiberstore, you can see to know more about MPO Fiber.

12 Fibers, Single-Mode, 12 Standard MPO Fiber Cable,3.0mm LSZH

MPO Trunk Cable

FiberStore offer singlemode and multimode (OM1, OM2, 10G OM3, 10G OM4) MPO/MTP Cable. Singlemode MPO MTP Fiber cable is primarily used for applications involving extensive distances, 10G Mpo Cassettes provide 10 gigabit data transfer speeds in high bandwidth applications and they are 5 times faster than standard 50um fiber cable. Work with both VCSEL laser and LED sources. The meanwhile, we also provide 40G/100G MPO/MTP trunk cable.