Infineon Announces Availability of 1310 nm VCSEL Diode and iSFP Transceiver Module; Breakthrough Reduces Cost of Optical Communication Products

Mar 24, 2003 | Market News

Atlanta GA – March 24, 2003 – At the Optical Fiber Communications (OFC) Conference here today, Infineon Technologies AG (FSE/NYSE: IFX) announced the availability of a VCSEL (Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser) diode with a 1310 nm wavelength, the first such diode to be produced by a supplier that can manufacture it in high volumes. The company demonstrated the new VCSEL diode operating in an intelligent small-form-factor-pluggable (iSFP) transceiver module, which was also introduced as a product at the show today. The two offerings enable manufacturers of optical devices, such as transceivers and transponders, to design cost-saving solutions for data communications and telecommunications applications.

Unlike the commonly used DFB (distributed feedback) and FP (Fabry-Perot) laser diodes, which emit light from the edge, VCSELs emit light from the surface, which greatly simplifies packaging and results in a significant cost-saving advantage. While VCSELs with an 850 nm wavelength have come to dominate short-reach datacom applications of up to 300 m, Infineon’s 1310nm VCSEL allows for transmission distances of up to 10 km. Infineon’s VCSEL diode makes a fundamentally innovative technology available to the market, bringing technical and cost advantages to optical device manufacturers looking to meet the needs of long-reach applications with the lowest possible investment. It also complements the company’s DFB/FP lasers, which will continue to be required in a variety of applications.

Infineon has been producing superior-quality 850 nm VCSELs in high volumes for several years. This experience, together with the company’s advanced packaging and electro-optical design capabilities, were used to create a manufacturable 1310 nm VCSEL. The result firmly establishes Infineon as a leader in 1310 nm VCSEL technology, broadens the company’s optical communications portfolio and reinforces its commitment to the high-speed datacom and telecomm markets.

“Our experience and high-volume capability enable us to ensure reliability of our 1310 nm VCSEL right from the beginning,” said Dr. Martin Schell, director of Infineon’s Fiber Optic Components Business Unit. “We have all the experience, production capacity and other measures in place to deliver the quality and quantity our customers expect.”

Infineon’s VCSEL diode features a high-quality optical beam that provides easy and cost-effective assembly and single-mode coupling, which is further supported by the nature of vertical emission and allows performance tests and selection to be made at an early stage of production. The spectral line width and side-mode suppression performance of the 1310 nm single-mode VCSEL are equivalent to or better than a DFB laser. It has very low threshold and operating currents, which allow its use in low-power consuming applications, and its heat dissipation is much less than that of a conventional edge-emitting laser.

To package the 1310 nm VCSEL, Infineon uses an innovative approach based on a standardized packaging technology, TSSOP (Thin Shrink Small Outline Package), that is widely used in the semiconductor industry. This type of packaging runs on Infineon’s qualified high-volume production lines, and extends the cost-saving advantages of the VCSEL diode into the packaging. Included with devices delivered to the customer will be an LC coupling unit and a flex-board electrical connection.

The 1310 nm VCSEL diode was demonstrated at the OFC Conference operating in an iSFP transceiver module at 2.5 Gbps (gigabits per second). Infineon’s iSFP transceiver modules provide an enhanced Digital Diagnostics Monitoring Interface that allows real-time access to such operating parameters as laser bias current, transmitted optical power, received optical power, internal transceiver temperature and supply voltage. They also feature internal calibration of measurements over operating temperature, as well as built-in alarm and warning threshold sensors that allow the user to determine when a particular value is outside of its operating range. In addition, they offer extended temperature ranges, the industry’s lowest EMI performance and best-in-class jitter performance.

“We are very pleased to be the first manufacturer to demonstrate a 1310 nm VCSEL integrated into a smart, or intelligent, transceiver module,” said Ayad Abul-Ella, director of Infineon’s Optical Modules Business Unit. “In the past three years, prices for transceivers have dropped significantly, and the use of our new VCSEL diode will help maintain that movement.”

Price and Availability

Samples of the 1310 nm VCSEL diode are available now, with volume production planned for later in the year. The device price will be significantly lower than that of current solutions. Volume production of final-standard-compliant iSFP modules with 1310 nm VCELs is planned for the second half of 2003, subsequent to the diode moving into production. Additional information about Infineon’s fiber optics products can be found at

About Infineon

Infineon Technologies AG, Munich, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions for the automotive and industrial sectors, for applications in the wired communications markets, secure mobile solutions as well as memory products. With a global presence, Infineon operates in the US from San Jose, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore and in Japan from Tokyo. In the fiscal year 2002 (ending September 2002), the company achieved sales of Euro 5.21 billion with about 30,400 employees worldwide. Infineon is listed on the DAX index of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX). Further information is available at

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