Tower Semiconductor and Alpine Optoelectronics, inc, announced that Alpine Optoelectronics, Inc. began production of its 400G PAM4 nCP4™ optical engine on Tower Semiconductor’s PH18 Silicon Photonics technology platform. Alpine’s nCP4 chip converts 4 lanes of 56Gbaud electrical input into 4 lanes of optical output for use in 400Gbps DR4 transceivers to support high-speed connectivity in data center applications.

“Alpine selected Tower Semiconductor as a foundry partner 2 years ago, because we believe in Tower’s capabilities of technology development and to seamlessly ramp production,” said Dr. Tongqing Wang, CEO, Alpine Optoelectronics, Inc.  “We were able to develop a proprietary design to enable wafer level testing and a flexible yet efficient edge coupler that works with both lens coupling and fiber array attachment.  We are also pleased with the high OE bandwidth of our modulators, thanks in part to Tower’s selection of PN junction doping.”

Based on LightCounting’s recent integrated optical devices report, Silicon Photonics based optical transceivers will enjoy an annual growth of 45% from 2019 to 2025, and it is expected to reach a market size of 3.9B USD in 2025.

Tower’s PH18 Silicon Photonics open foundry process offers a set of optical components including ultra-high bandwidth modulators, photodetectors, and low-loss waveguides that can be combined to enable innovative and highly integrated photonic products.  

“We are excited to announce another production success story for our open foundry Silicon Photonics platform and our partnership with Alpine, an elite supplier to some of the leaders in the optical industry,” said Dr. Marco Racanelli, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Analog IC Business Unit. Tower Semiconductor, “Our unique foundry process provides customers like Alpine not only a sustainable level of maturity but also the flexibility to innovate in a market that is still young and expected to grow strongly in the coming years as 400Gb and 800Gb platforms are deployed.”

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