OFS Becomes Part of MERLIN Project Developing New Space Photonics Hardware

OFS, a leading designer of optical fibers, cables, and connectivity solutions, has joined EU-funded research project MERLIN (Multi-gigabit, Energy-efficient, Ruggedized Lightwave Engines for advanced on-board digital processors) for the development of transceivers for telecommunications satellites.

MERLIN's objective is to develop new space photonics hardware for enabling Terabit optical connectivity within next-generation of high capacity telecommunication satellites.

"We are pleased to be a part of this European R&D team developing the next generation Tera-scale capacity in satellite communication," said Dr. Lars Gruner-Nielsen, OFS Fellow. "OFS' engineering team will work to develop a radiation hard multicore multimode fiber for these satellites to enable cost effective capacity scalability and power efficiency," he adds.

Terabit optical interconnectivity with a unique combination of low-power and high-bandwidth lasers and receivers, low power, radiation-hardened electronic drivers and new radiation-hardened optical fibers will be the focal point of the project work for the next three years. MERLIN's aim is to integrate these technologies on a space-grade photonic integration platform capable to provide ruggedized transceiver modules with a record-high 150 Gb/s throughput and record-low <10 mW/ Gb/s energy consumption.

"Successful MERLIN transceiver development is expected to favor the advent of highly flexible, advanced telecom satellite payloads, based on optically interconnected Tera-scale digital on-board processors, by achieving disruptive capacity scalability, power efficiency and cost-effectiveness," said Leontios Stampoulidis, project coordinator from Constelex.

About OFS
OFS is a world-leading designer, manufacturer and provider of optical fiber, optical fiber cable, connectivity, FTTX and specialty photonics solutions. Our marketing, sales, manufacturing and research teams provide forward-looking, innovative products and solutions in areas including Telecommunications, Medicine, Industrial Automation, Sensing, Government, Aerospace and Defense applications. We provide reliable, cost effective optical solutions to enable our customers to meet the needs of today's and tomorrow's digital and energy consumers and businesses.

OFS' corporate lineage dates back to 1876 and includes technology powerhouses such as AT&T and Lucent Technologies. Today, OFS is owned by Furukawa Electric, a multi-billion dollar global leader in optical communications.

Headquartered in Norcross (near Atlanta) Georgia, U.S., OFS is a global provider with facilities in China, Denmark, Germany, Russia, and the United States.

About MERLIN
The European project MERLIN (Multi-gigabit, Energy-efficient, Ruggedized Lightwave Engines for advanced on-board digital processors) was launched on 1. October 2013 with the kick-off meeting held in Athens, Greece on 7. November 2013.

MERLIN brings together leading European innovators from industry and academia for achieving its challenging technology objectives that require expertise spanning from III-V integration, fibre drawing, high speed electronic IC design, optoelectronic integration and photonic packaging. System applicability and specifications is driven by a leading satellite manufacturer.

The project team includes Constelex Technology Enablers, Thales Alenia Space, Philips Technologie GmbH U-L-M Photonics, OFS, IHP Leibniz-Institut fur innovative Mikroelektronik, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Chalmers University of Technology.

Source: http://www.ofsoptics.com

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