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A Closer Look at 200G Active Optical Cables (AOC) in Data Centers

Posted on Dec 20, 2023 by
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In the ever-evolving landscape of data centers, the quest for faster and more efficient connectivity solutions has led to the emergence of cutting-edge technologies. One such innovation making waves in the industry is the high-speed AOC such as 200G Active Optical Cable (AOC). This article delves into the intricacies of 200G AOC, exploring its working principles, types, applications, and advantages over Direct Attach Cables (DAC).

What is 200G AOC?

Active Optical Cables (AOC) are high-speed cabling solutions that integrate active components, such as lasers and photodiodes, into the cable assembly. These components enable the transmission of optical signals over a fiber optic cable. In the context of data centers, 200G AOC specifically refers to AOC designed to handle data rates of 200 gigabits per second (Gbps).

Working Principles of 200G AOC

The core working principle of 200G AOC involves the use of lasers to convert electrical signals into optical signals at one end and then convert them back into electrical signals at the other end. This process ensures high-speed and reliable data transmission over longer distances within a data center.

Types of 200G AOC

200G QSFP-DD AOC and 200G QSFP56 AOC

The 200G AOC landscape includes variations like the 200G QSFP-DD AOC and 200G QSFP56 AOC. The former, based on the Quad Small Form-Factor Pluggable Double Density (QSFP-DD) standard, is known for its high density, supporting 8 lanes of 25G or 50G per lane. The latter, based on the QSFP56 standard, provides a cost-effective solution for 200G connectivity.

FS 200G AOCs & 200G AOC Breakouts

200G AOC Breakouts

An essential feature of 200G AOC breakouts is the ability to break out into multiple lower-speed channels, providing flexibility in various networking scenarios.

  • 200G AOC to 2x100G AOC: This breakout configuration allows the 200G AOC to function as two independent 100G AOC, providing versatility in addressing different connectivity requirements.

  • 200G AOC to 4x50G AOC: Dividing the 200G AOC into four 50G AOC enables optimal utilization of the cable in scenarios where lower bandwidth is preferred.

  • 200G AOC to 8x25G AOC: For applications demanding even lower bandwidth, the 200G AOC can be broken out into eight 25G AOC, offering granular control over data transfer rates.

Applications of 200G AOC

The versatility of 200G AOC makes it suitable for various applications within data centers, high-performance computing (HPC), and cloud computing environments. Specific use cases include:

Data Center Networks: 200G AOC plays a crucial role in connecting servers, switches, and storage devices within data centers, ensuring seamless and high-speed communication.

High-Performance Computing (HPC): In HPC environments where massive computational power is required, 200G AOC contributes to the rapid exchange of data between processors and storage units.

Cloud Computing: Cloud service providers benefit from the high bandwidth and reliability of 200G AOC to support the ever-increasing demand for data storage and processing capabilities.

Supercomputing and Research: 200G AOC is used to interconnect nodes in supercomputing clusters, enabling high-performance parallel processing.

Video Production and Broadcasting: 200G AOC can be used to transport high-resolution 4k and 8k video signals within production facilities, supporting the demand for higher video and broadcasting quality.

Advantages of AOC over DAC

Compared to 200G Direct Attach Cables (DAC), 200G Active Optical Cables offer several advantages, making them a preferred choice in certain scenarios:

Longer Reach: AOC can transmit data over longer distances compared to DAC, making them suitable for applications where the endpoints are not close.

Lighter Weight: AOC is generally lighter than DAC, contributing to easier cable management and reduced strain on equipment.

Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) Immunity: AOC is less susceptible to electromagnetic interference, ensuring a more stable and reliable signal transmission in environments with high interference.

Choose FS 200G AOC Products

As data center networks continue to evolve, the role of 200G Active Optical Cables becomes increasingly pivotal. Understanding their working principles, types, applications, and advantages over DAC provides valuable insights for network administrators and engineers striving to build efficient and high-performance data center infrastructures.

When considering 200G AOC solutions, you can always trust FS as a reliable provider offering a range of high-quality 200G AOC products. Our portfolio includes 200G QSFP-DD AOC, 200G QSFP56 AOC, 200G HDR InfiniBand AOC, and customizable options such as 200G AOC to 2x100G AOC and 200G AOC to 4x50G AOC configurations. With a commitment to quality and performance, FS products are designed to meet the demanding requirements of modern data center networks.

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