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76 SMT007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2019 Feature by Scott Sommers MOLEX The explosion in data center activity shows no signs of abating. Cisco's latest Visual Net- working Index (VNI) study projects annual global IP traffic will reach 4.8 zettabytes per year by 2022 after breaking one zettabyte just three years ago. Worldwide traffic will triple over the next five years, reaching 50 GB per capita. The VNI study anticipates 28.5 billion networked devices by 2022, up from 18 billion in 2017, with 82% percent of all data flow due to video viewing. According to Cisco's report, most IP traffic either originates or terminates in data centers. Yet as massive as the flows between centers are becoming, the data managed within those same facilities is going even higher. All of this activity means that "hyperscale" is the word of the future. Roughly one-quarter of all servers installed in 2016 went to hyperscale facilities, but that number will grow to almost one-half by next year. Other advances that are heav- ily impacting the modern data center is the rise in 400-Gbps technology, the expansion of cloud computing, and how virtual data cen- ters, machine learning, and AI are all driving change. To meet the pressing need for high signal integrity, lower latency, lower insertion loss, and higher density data transmission, trans- ceivers and modules capable of supporting 400 Gbps are quickly being developed. At the forefront is the Quad Small Form Factor Plug- gable-Double Density (QSFP-DD) system— the most advanced interconnect standard yet. Defining form factors and performance spec- ifications for this new standard is the QSFP- DD Multi-Source Agreement (MSA) comprised of leading data center equipment and compo- nent suppliers. The QSFP-DD MSA was formed to address the speed/density requirements of 400 Gbps. Over 60 companies and organizations are cur- rently in the QSFP-DD MSA. Promoters of the standard include Broadcom LTD, Cisco, Corn- ing, Finisar, Foxconn Interconnect Technology, Huawei Ltd., Intel, Juniper Networks, Lumen- tum, Mellanox, Molex LLC, and TE Connec- tivity. A number of well-known organizations contribute to the MSA, such as Alibaba Group, Interconnect Standard Explaining the QSFP-DD Data Center

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