Data Center PEG

The Data Center Product Emulator Group (PEG) is one of two PEGs. The emulators define the application needs and system performance targets, based upon an understanding of the consequences of parallelism, virtualization, and software defined networks.  Each PEG report will be divided into near term (10 years) and long term (30 years) sections.  The near term will look more like a traditional iNEMI Product Emulator Group (PEG) structure with well-defined attributes evolving over specific time intervals (application needs).  The long term will be more speculative with less specificity on attributes (system targets).  

Data centers are a critical node of network architecture that is driving higher bandwidth from the core network to ever shorter distances.  As single channel data rates exceed 10Gb/s, copper transmission lines introduce excessive loss, necessitating a transition to photonic interconnects.  The pervasive use of photonic interconnects at short distances means that photonic transport becomes a higher fraction of system data movement, requiring system design, architecture, software and hardware to be reconsidered.  The "grand challenges" for information hardware are 1) photonic integration for bandwidth density and 2) high-volume manufacturing to meet system demand.
Requirements for these applications focus on:
  • High bandwidth (single mode/wave division multiplex)
  • Low latency
  • Low power consumption
  • Continuous duty at full speed
  • Thermal stability for photonic components
  • Heterogeneous integration
  • Variable frequency for power reduction
  • Redundancy or other means to insure no failures
  • Optical to electronic (O to E) and electronic to optical (E to O) located in PWB mounted SiP (system in package)
  • Low cost with path to continuous cost improvement 


Robert (Bob) C Pfahl Jr.
Director of IPSR and Chair, Automotive PEG