Chapter 14. 400 Gigabit Ethernet

The development of a higher-speed Ethernet system beyond 100 Gb/s began with an IEEE “Bandwidth Assessment Ad Hoc group,” which was announced in May 2011. This group held multiple meetings and teleconferences over the period of a year, during which they analyzed the bandwidth requirements for a range of customers and industries.[48] The group found that bandwidth requirements were growing at an average of 58% annually, and that there was an immediate need to begin development of a higher-speed Ethernet system. These findings were documented in a report published in July 2012.[49]

Following the publication of the Bandwidth Assessment report, a “Higher Speed Ethernet Consensus Ad Hoc” group was formed to develop a consensus on what speed could be achieved in the next couple of years for a higher-speed Ethernet system.[50] The consensus group concluded that 400 Gb/s was technically achievable, and that waiting for 1 terabit (Tb) technology to be developed would delay the creation of a new standard by several years. Experts in optical components and other signaling elements reported that achieving rates beyond 400 Gb/s was not possible with current production-quality components. They determined that to achieve 1 Tb/s speeds outside the laboratory would require major investments in research and development. And that, in turn, meant that waiting for 1 Tb/s would result in a considerably longer time to market.

400 Gb/s Ethernet Study Group

The conclusion to ...

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