Home » Uncategorized » LightCounting: Optical communications market recovery continues/Spectronix Eye-BERT Micro combines bit error rate test, optical signal generation, and SFP test

LightCounting: Optical communications market recovery continues/Spectronix Eye-BERT Micro combines bit error rate test, optical signal generation, and SFP test

SEPTEMBER 29, 2010 — Despite continuing declines in capital expenditures and modest growth in sales of telecom networking equipment, the industry momentum is clearly positive in 2010, says market research firm LightCounting.

Sales of datacom systems picked up “promptly” in 2010, LightCounting asserts, as businesses restarted upgrade projects delayed by the economic downturn. Very strong demand for optical components and modules is an early indication of the industry-wide recovery, the analysts assert. LightCounting projections for market growth in 2011–2014 are detailed in a new forecast report and database, which are available now.

Global sales of transceivers will reach $2.4 billion in 2010, increasing by 16%, according to the report. Sales of Ethernet and Fibre Channel modules will increase by 17% and 25%, respectively, the report adds, driven by sales of 8G and 10G SFP+ transceivers. DWDM transceiver sales, led by 10-Gbps XFP modules, will be up 22% for the year, LightCounting predicts.

In addition, sales of passive optical components, ROADMs, pump lasers, and amplifiers are growing well ahead of the total market for components and modules in 2010. This suggests that a new cycle in infrastructure upgrades may be starting now, since these devices are typically used in early stages of network installations, LightCounting points out.

“Concerned about the future impact of a hobbled infrastructure, governments in the United States, China, India, and elsewhere are investing in economic stimulus programs to support the growth and expansion of their national communications infrastructure and jumpstarting a new investment cycle,” commented David Krozier, senior analyst at LightCounting. “We also see increasing use of optical connectivity in wireless infrastructure to support the exploding bandwidth needs of new 3G and LTE networks.”

The forecast report presents analysis of infrastructure upgrades of the top 10 network operators, a summary of trends in networking equipment market, and analysis of the forecast for optical components and modules. The forecast database includes historical data from 2007 to 2010 and a market forecast through 2014 for optical components and modules used in Ethernet, Fibre Channel, SONET/SDH, CWDM/DWDM, wireless infrastructure, FTTx, and high-performance computing applications. The sales data for 2007 to 20010 account for more than 30 transceiver vendors, including 25 vendors that shared confidential sales data with LightCounting. The market forecast for 2010 to 2014 is based on LightCounting’s model correlating transceiver sales with network traffic growth and projected subscribers of FTTx systems.

OCTOBER 5, 2010 — Spectronix, Inc. has unveiled the Eye-BERT Micro. The Eye-BERT Micro is designed to combine low-cost, high-performance bit error rate testing with features “not found in ordinary test equipment,” according to Spectronix.

Designed for use by engineers, technicians, manufacturers, and installers, the Eye-BERT Micro is simple to operate and offers versatility by using standard SFP transceiver modules, giving the user the ability to customize the interface for various fiber types and wavelengths, Spectronix says.

The Eye-BERT Micro operates at 11 standard bit rates between 125 Mbps and 4.25 Gbps and can generate seven different standard test patterns. One Eye-BERT Micro feature Spectronix highlights is its ability to generate nonstandard bit rates that the user can program in 1-Hz steps. The unit also can use any user-programmable 40-bit pattern, including unbalanced signals, for bit error rate testing, Spectronix adds. The included Windows user interface exploits the custom bit rate and pattern generator features to form an optical signal generator capable of producing a modulated optical signal of nearly any frequency between 3 MHz and 2.1 GHz, the company says.

A feature of the Eye-BERT Micro that makes it especially useful for network installation professionals, according to Spectronix, is its ability to decode and automatically test SFP transceivers. SFP identification and testing is accomplished without having to look up the transceiver specifications. Inserting an SFP with a loopback cable and initiating the Test SFP function will cause the Eye-BERT Micro to read the transceiver registers and automatically test the device performance against the specifications read. Within 20 seconds a detailed test report is generated including part number, serial number, date code, operational specifications, diagnostics, functional test results, BERT results, and overall pass/fail results, Spectronix says.

The unit measures 3.5×2.5×1.2 inches and comes with optional flange mounts, a USB driver, Windows software application, and a ruggedized carrying case. The simple communication protocol makes user application development and integration into automated test equipment straightforward, Spectronix says.

Target applications include use in the lab, by network installation professionals, and for integration into larger systems or ATE to provide dedicated link verification.

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