Press Releases

Press Releases

Inphi Announces World’s First 16nm Polaris™ PAM4 Platform Solutions for Next-Generation Data Center Cloud Deployments

Market Leading Platform Solutions include the 16nm PAM4 DSP, Linear TIA and Driver
For 50/100/200/400GbE Optical Interconnects

SANTA CLARA, Calif., March 20, 2017 – Inphi Corporation (NYSE: IPHI), a leader in high-speed data movement interconnects, today announced Polaris™, the industry’s first 16nm CMOS PAM4 platform solution for next-generation cloud deployments. The Polaris platform includes Inphi’s highly integrated, lowest power PAM4 digital signal processing (DSP) IC alongside its companion market leading, low power linear driver and TIA for data center connectivity. The company will be showcasing the platform in a live demo at its booth #3601 at OFC 2017 in Los Angeles, CA on March 21-23, 2017.

The existing megatrends of cloud services, Big Data, IoT, Social are now being overlaid with a new set of upcoming megatrends like the transition to 5G wireless, Autonomous Vehicles, AI chatbots, Augmented and Virtual Reality, causing a data and traffic explosion that continue to drive the insatiable need for unlimited bandwidth. There is a clear need to increase the speed of interconnect pipes while maintaining cloud economics and lowering carbon footprints. PAM4 modulation has now been recognized as the modulation scheme that will take the industry over the next wave of Ethernet deployments for optical interconnects by doubling the bits per symbol at the same baud rate. The foundation of the 16nm CMOS PAM4 PHY is a highly configurable DSP Engine that is based on three generations of proven silicon and is designed to achieve performance levels for both multi-mode and single mode optical interconnects covering up to 10km, while keeping an extremely low power profile of optical module applications. By combining the linear driver and TIA products, Inphi has developed a highly integrated solution optimized for optical module data center deployments.

“As a pioneer of PAM4 technology, Inphi has continued to invest and innovate to deliver market leading data center platform solutions enabling next-generation applications. Experience gained from our 28nm family announced back in Aug 2015 and more than two years of working closely with customers on 28GBaud optics with our PAM4 DSP, TIA, and Driver, we now carry forward our new Polaris 16nm product family to enable the ramp of 50/100/200/400G cloud interconnects,” said Siddharth Sheth, vice president, Networking Interconnect, Inphi.

“With 100GbE deployments ramping fast last year and with the expected availability of switch silicon with 50G PAM4 I/O this year, the next step is the deployment of PAM4 in higher-speed 200/400GbE solutions. This announcement supports the necessary products for the evolution of Ethernet connectivity inside the cloud data center,” said Dale Murray, Principal Analyst, LightCounting Market Research.

Polaris 16nm PAM4 DSP PHY Product Family:
Inphi’s 16nm PAM4 DSP PHY ICs provide a full bi-directional interface with host ASICs that have 28GBaud PAM4 and NRZ electrical interfaces while bridging to 28GBaud PAM4 optics. The product family can support PAM4 or NRZ signaling, and both Retiming and Gearbox functionality with packaging specifically designed for the following optics modules:

  • • Polaris-400G – 8x56Gbps PAM4 <-> 16x28Gbps NRZ gearbox for CFP8
  • • Polaris-400G (NG) – 8x56Gbps <-> 8x56Gbps PAM4 retiming for OSFP / QSFP-DD
  • • Polaris-200G – 4x56Gbps <-> 4x56Gbps PAM4 retiming for QSFP56
  • • Polaris-100G – 2x56Gbps <-> 2x56Gbps PAM4 retiming for QSFP28
  • • Polaris-50G – 1x56Gbps <-> 1x56Gbps PAM4 retiming for SFP56

Other technical features include:

  • • InphiNity™ DSP Engine with a unique mixed-mode DSP architecture for high performance, low power applications needing adaptability and configurability
  • • Numerous self-test and loopback modes that allow diagnostic monitoring of channel and system parameters
  • • Eye-scan, samplers and monitors on all receiver interfaces for link margin and stress testing along with GUI and API routines for data and error analytics
  • • Currently sampling to lead customers

IN2834 Linear Driver:
The IN2834 is a 28GBaud low power quad linear driver for PAM4 optical modules. The driver features:

  • • Excellent linearity, high bandwidth, adjustable gain to optimize the PAM4 system performances
  • • Two high frequency bias T integrated inside the package, one for driver to reduce the power consumption, the other one for EML bias voltage
  • • Low-power EML driver in small package

IN2864 Linear TIA:
The IN2864 is a 28GBaud low power quad linear TIA for PAM4 optical modules. The TIA features:

  • • Wide dynamic range to meet the different performance and link requirements for optical applications
  • • Excellent signal integrity necessary for PAM4 modulation schemes
  • • Low power and small form factor

Come See Us at OFC 2017
Inphi is showcasing its latest next-generation products in booth #3601 at OFC 2017 in Los Angeles, CA on March 21-23, 2017.

About Inphi
Inphi Corporation is a leader in high-speed data movement interconnects. We move big data – fast, throughout the globe, between data centers, and inside data centers. Inphi’s expertise in signal integrity results in reliable data delivery, at high speeds, over a variety of distances. As data volumes ramp exponentially due to video streaming, social media, cloud-based services, and wireless infrastructure, the need for speed has never been greater. That’s where we come in. Customers rely on Inphi’s solutions to develop and build out the Service Provider and Cloud infrastructures, and data centers of tomorrow. To learn more about Inphi, visit

Inphi, the Inphi logo and Think fast are registered trademarks of Inphi Corporation. All other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

Corporate Contact:
Kim Markle