LPO is short for Linear Pluggable Optics (or Linear-drive Pluggable Optics), it is a potential technology to satisfy the low power consumption and high bandwidth demand of data centers like CPO (Co-packaged Optics). Currently, IPEC (The International Photonics & Electronics Committee) is focusing on cutting-edge optoelectronic technologies.
Image source from LightCounting
The following are the main benefits of LPO Solution
Simplifies design with a pluggable module interface
In the LPO solution, the packaging form factor is still based on the legacy type, using a pluggable design that allows for easy plugging and unplugging of the transceivers. It makes optical interconnection flexible and convenient, and simplifies fiber cabling and equipment maintenance, making the system easy to manage and upgrade.
Minimizes power consumption and link latency
LPO optical modules reduce power consumption by about 50% compared with traditional pluggable optical modules. With the Linear-drive solution, the power consumption of SiPh (Silicon Photonics) and VCSEL (Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser) also decreases by about 50%.
By eliminating DSPs and utilizing high linearity TIA and DRIVER chips with EQ functionality, the system can reduce signal recovery time, significantly reducing latency to even picosecond level.
Low cost by eliminating expensive discrete DSP from module
LPO technology has a lower cost by design without DSPs, The DSPs cost around 20% to 40% of the Bill of Materials (BOM) in 400G optical modules. In the LPO solution, the Driver and TIA integrate EQ functionality. While there may be a slight increase in cost, the overall cost of the optical module can still be significantly reduced.