Anritsu Corporation has released its Signal Processing Software Option-098, adding upgraded functions for evaluating PAM4 differential electrical signals to its BERTWave Sampling Oscilloscope MP2110A.

This new option supports standards-compliant measurement of IEEE 802.3 optical-module electrical interfaces, speeding up communications in data centres and mobile networks by upgrading evaluation efficiency for 50G to 400G optical modules employing PAM4 technology.

Data centres are currently switching to PAM4 optical modules to handle the large increase in communications traffic on mobile networks. Furthermore, in line with the need for simpler configuration of flexible networks, PAM4 optical modules for communications support more communications speeds, ranging from 50Gbit/s to 800Gbit/s, than the traditional NRZ technology.

With PAM4 optical modules supporting various speeds, the different module types must also be supported at the equipment side. Moreover, under the conventional system, network equipment and optical modules were procured from the same vendor, but the drive to cut costs is seeing users source equipment and modules from different vendors.

In these circumstances, interconnectivity must be assured, not only between interfaces at the optical side but also at the electrical side. Ensuring this interconnectivity demands strict evaluation based on the IEEE 802.3 PHY-layer standards.

To satisfy these upgraded interconnectivity demands while continuing to support PAM4 optical interface measurements, the company has now added support for measurement of IEEE 802.3 PAM4 electrical interfaces to its MP2110A, employed by many makers as a sampling oscilloscope for manufacturing optical modules.