January 7, 2019 – The factory produces the company’s patented “optical engines” used in making active optical cables for devices using HDMI, DisplayPort and USB3 connections. The expansion, within its existing facility, is already underway and will be completed during the first quarter of the year. Employment at the factory will increase 30 percent.
“We need this expansion for the introduction of a family of module products for HDMI, DisplayPort, USB3 and custom VR applications and to meet demand resulting from the new HDMI 2.1 specification,” said Ruud van Linden, CEO, Silicon Line. “We will be able to produce optical engines and cable modules to make millions of cables annually.”
Cable modules house the optical engine and other components inside cable-end connectors. Two modules, one at each end, are required for every cable. Silicon Line’s optical engines simplify coupling of light into the fiber, greatly reducing material and production costs of optical cables to allow affordable consumer pricing.
“The company may look to expand factory capacity again next year as demand and consumer applications for high bandwidth cables continues to grow,” said van der Linden.
The Hasselt factory is the only facility where the company’s optical engines are produced. In addition to active optical link technology for consumer products, the company is also developing optical engines and customized cable modules for commercial and industrial applications.
The increasing bandwidth requirements of new and evolving connectivity standards, especially HDMI, DisplayPort and USB3, are driving cable makers to use optical fiber instead of copper for the interconnect cables needed, for example, to connect a video game console, computer or set-top box to a TV. The longer the length of cable required, the more likely it is that optical cables will be used.
Silicon Line is demonstrating a prototype of the world’s first active optical cable for HDMI 2.1 at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, Las Vegas Convention Center South Hall in the HDMI Licensing Administrator exhibit, booth 20208.
About Silicon Line
Silicon Line GmbH is the global leader in ultra-low-power optical link technology enabling thin, lightweight and long high-speed cables for consumer electronics, commercial and industrial applications. The company develops and manufactures integrated circuits and modules which allow a simple, low-cost, high volume assembly of active optical cables. Founded in 2005, Silicon Line is based in Munich, Germany with offices in Belgium, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, China and the United States.