Silicon Line GmbH releases industry-wide lowest power consuming VCSEL Driver

December 19, 2005 – Silicon Line GmbH, a German analog and mixed signal IC design company, today announced the release of its SL81020, an 1.25 Gigabit per second (Gb/s) Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser (VCSEL) Driver.

The product, which provides the lowest power consumption in the industry, makes possible a single-package VCSEL/VCSEL-driver hybrid design. By integrating the purely CMOS-based driver into the Transmit Optical Sub-Assembly (TOSA) next to the VCSEL, the device removes design constraints, improves signal integrity, and allows for reduced manufacturing and equipment design costs.

The VCSEL driver may be used for a number of applications, including Gigabit Ethernet, OC-3, OC-12, Fiber Channel, or IEEE-1394 S100-800 to name just a few.

“Silicon Line is proud to announce a VCSEL-driver, which allows the creation of a new class of low cost active optical devices,” said Holger Hoeltke, Managing Director at Silicon Line. “We are excited to have complemented our previously released, excellent transimpedance amplifier design with a world class VCSEL-driver design. One more time we have proved that we are able to implement functionalities in CMOS that was previously possible only in silicon germanium or gallium arsenide.”

The SL81020 can be dc coupled to the VCSEL, thereby eliminating the need for any bias filters and saving costs. The VCSEL-driver operates over a -40 to +125 ºC temperature range from a single +3.3V power supply and exhibits a power consumption of only 8 mW.

The device supports data rates from 10 Mb/s to well above 1.5 Gb/s.

To facilitate assembly in small form factor packages and to reduce assembly cost further the SL81020 integrates all necessary functions on chip. Except for one reference resistor, no external components are needed to operate the driver.