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Cable Technology Feature Article

June 01, 2009

Vitesse's Crosspoint Switch Devices Now Available

By Calvin Azuri, TMCnet Contributor

Vitesse Semiconductor Corporation has launched crosspoint switch devices that enable 2x speed and bandwidth improvement in data center switches and network storage equipment.
The new devices consist of Vitesse’s signal integrity technology which enables transmission and signal recovery of high-speed signals over lossy printed circuit board, backplane and cable media.
Officials say the crosspoint and signal integrity technology from Vitesse is required to enable high-speed switching and signal propagation amongst servers, workstations and network storage systems when the industry migrates from 4G to 8G Fiber Channel.
OEMs support 8G Fiber Channel in switch and blade server card products due to increased demand for remote data storage, network capacity, server-to-storage and server-to-server networking. The new VSC3144-08 and VSC3303 crosspoint switches from Vitesse enable the migration to 8G Fiber Channel by providing a pin-compatible speed upgrade of up to 8.5 Gbps per channel.
The new products include the 8.5G 144X144 channel VSC3144-08 and the 8.5G 4X4 channel VSC3303 crosspoint switches. A high-capacity semiconductor device, the VSC3144-08 provides 1.224 Terabit per second switching capacity. The VSC3303 is a low-power device ideal for board edge placement to clean up signals transmitted across the system backplane. When used together, the crosspoints will enable low-latency by fully non-blocking switching capability on line cards and switch cards.
The VSC3144-08 is footprint compatible to Vitesse’s previous generation devices. This allows a pin-compatible speed upgrade path for customers using the Vitesse 4.25G VSC3140 or 6.5G VSC3144 products. The VSC3144-08 has adjustable input signal equalization with per-channel and global control. Along with adjustable output pre-emphasis with per-channel and global control, the VSC3144-08 also has the lowest power available at this bandwidth level with 21W power consumption.
The VSC3303 consists of dual time constant, programmable output signal pre-emphasis from Vitesse which enables it to compensate for multiple impairments and discontinuities in a signal path that are introduced by connectors and long PCB traces. The smaller form factor of the VSC3303 will route, drive and restore 8.5G signals on line cards by utilizing Vitesse’s FlexEQ adaptive equalization and Electronic Dispersion Compensation technology.
By consuming only 200 mW per channel, the VSC3303 reduces power requirements by up to 50 percent over previous generation devices. The VSC3303 also features input equalization and loss of signal detecting and transmitting for out-of-band support of SAS (News - Alert)/SATA storage protocols. It also has a full non-blocking and multicasting switch core and flexible fourth-generation equalization and pre-emphasis I/O capability along with dual-decay pre-emphasis.

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Calvin Azuri is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Calvin’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Michael Dinan