The Compound Semiconductor Centre (CSC) – a joint venture between Cardiff University and epiwafer foundry and substrate maker IQE plc of Cardiff, Wales, UK – has announced the award of a £1.1m collaborative R&D project under the recent InnovateUK Emerging and Enabling Technologies Call.
Project SUPER8 (A scalable 200Gb/s Super-thermal, 8-channel CWDM architecture) will focus on the development of new ultra-high-speed transceiver platform to service the enormous growth market in optical datacoms in hyper-scale cloud data centers.
The project consortium comprises Cardiff-based CSC (founded in 2015 with the mission of accelerating commercialization of compound semiconductor materials and device research), transceiver manufacturer Kaiam of Newark, CA, UA (which has a primary manufacturing plant in Livingston, Scotland, UK) and III-V optoelectronic foundry Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global Ltd (CST Global) of Hamilton (near Glasgow), Scotland (a subsidiary of Sweden-based Sivers IMA Holdings AB). The consortium partners will collaborate to deliver a commercial-grade solution with the target of transfer to high-volume manufacturing in a timescale of 30 months.
“The adoption of cloud services, video-on-demand and emerging IoT [Internet of Things] services are driving a massively expanding global data bandwidth demand,” says CSC project lead Dr Wyn Meredith. “The UK is already a major player in the supply of high-performance compound semiconductor materials and components that underpin the global communications network. However, next-generation high-capacity networks will require higher-transmission-rate, lower-cost transceiver solutions,” he adds. “This project will deliver an ‘all UK’-developed and -manufactured solution which leverages world-class compound semiconductor materials and device expertise at CSC and CST with Kaiam’s highly innovative photonic integrated circuit technology.”