100 Gb/s Pattern Generator and Comparator
Award last edited on: 12/11/2013

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code

Principal Investigator
Edward Walter Hagley

Company Information

Acadia Cyber Solutions LLC (AKA: Acadia Optronics LLC)

1395 Piccard Drive Suite 210
Rockville, MD 20850
   (301) 237-6569
Location: Single
Congr. District: 08
County: Montgomery

Phase I

Contract Number: ----------
Start Date: ----    Completed: ----
Phase I year
Phase I Amount
Development of 100 Gb/s network infrastructure, even though nascent, is gathering momentum as a result of the progress made in the 100 Gb/s Ethernet and Optical Transport Network (OTN) standardization efforts. A 100 Gb/s test bed proposed by ESNet is expected to facilitate rapid data transfer between geographically dispersed clouds allowing scientists to use available computing resources regardless of location. Several commercial network operators such as Verizon and AT&T have also expressed their interest in deploying 40/100 Gb/s infrastructure in their core networks [2]. These forces have driven several network hardware manufacturers to intensify their focus on the 40/100 Gb/s network product development. The burgeoning interest in the deployment of such infrastructure necessitates the development of test and measurement equipment capable of operating at data rates of the order of 100 Gb/s. To this effect, efforts have been undertaken by several hardware vendors such as Spirent, Agilent, and Ixia to develop equipment that can assess the limitations and robustness of 40/100 Gb/s systems. For instance, the Spirent TestCenter HyperMetrics 40/100 Gb/s Ethernet Module has been designed to validate performance and scalability at layers 1-7. Acadia proposes to develop a 100 Gb/s low-cost and compact pattern generator/comparator module that can be widely deployed to perform compliance testing on the lower layers of the network. These test modules can be retained at deployed locations to monitor physical links on-demand i.e., even after completion of initial testing and verification. The system is also envisioned to seamlessly integrate with network performance measurement software such as perfSONAR. The proposed effort will focus on the development of a highly reliable physical layer testing setup enabling both short-haul and long-haul links to be checked for jitter, noise, and bit errors. The project will utilize a high-speed Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) generating a Pseudo Random Bit Sequence (PRBS) which is transmitted to the optical physical link under test. On the receive side, the incoming data is checked for any bit-errors using a comparator operating at line rate. Initially, Acadia intends to design the system to transmit/receive unframed traffic, i.e., without a Media Access Control (MAC) block to allow testing of transparent links. Commercial Applications and Other Bene

Phase II

Contract Number: ----------
Start Date: ----    Completed: ----
Phase II year
Phase II Amount
Network operators are facing sustained bandwidth demands from users and applications in the scientific computing and commercial communities. Hence many are actively migrating to faster 40/100 Gb/s technologies to support large scale transfers. Here the provision of advanced network testing/monitoring capabilities is vital for rapid and effective deployment of these new technologies. However, current 40/100 Gb/s testing systems feature bulky footprints and extremely high cost, and therefore pose a serious impediment for the rapid deployment and maintenance of next-generation networks. We propose to address these critical concerns by developing a compact, low-cost 40/100 Gb/s testing module that leverages commercial off-the-shelf hardware and provides full integration with existing network monitoring software. This solution will allow operators to greatly-increase their testing footprints and accelerate migration to faster link rates. It will also provide users with detailed real-time monitoring/diagnostic capabilities for their end-to-end data transfersa major improvement over current technologies. In the Phase I effort we conducted a thorough analysis to determine the feasibility of the planned approach. This work consisted of three primary objectives: 1) clearly defining the system requirements; 2) producing a comprehensive architecture design with full module specifications; and 3) developing a basic working prototype. This effort also conducted detailed investigations on integrating the proposed system with existing network monitoring frameworks used in the scientific community. In Phase II we will transition the Phase I feasibility study and preliminary hardware prototype into a complete system ready for commercialization. Here the initial baseline specification produced in Phase I will be significantly expanded with new capabilities and interfaces. Next, this framework will be integrated with higher-level monitoring systems to demonstrate comprehensive end-to-end test monitoring capabilities. Finally we will develop and analyze various testcase scenarios to demonstrate the final product and quantify its overall performance and cost-effectiveness. Overall, the envisioned solution will greatly benefit operators and users in the scientific and commercial communities via the provision of a compact, cost-effective 40/100 Gb/s network testing module that seamlessly interfaces with existing monitoring software. Hence operators will be able accelerate the deployment of their next-generation infrastructures and significantly improve user service support for massive bulk transfers.