The chipsets from Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) are the first production units fabbed in CMOS to enable transmission of data at a rate of 40Gbps. The chipsets support two channels with each having a raw data rate of up to 23Gbps.
Previous chipsets have been using exotic materials, which not only make them more expensive to manufacture, but also makes them more power hungry.
The Broadcom BCM84141 demultiplexer (Demux) for receiving data, and the BCM84142 multiplexer (Mux) for transmission only consume around 3.5W, which compare very favorably to the previous generations from competing suppliers, where the consumption is in excess of 12W.
Cutting power consumption is the key for manufacturing switches and routers with much higher densities that are paramount in data centers. Broadcom is not the only company to develop mux- and demux chipsets in CMOS. Intel also has a major effort in this area basically trying to integrate optics in the chips thereby giving customers a much simpler and cheaper design for equipment using optical links.S|A
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