The digital signal processor (DSP) is the electronic heart of coherent transmission systems. The fundamental function of the DSP is encoding the electronic digital data into the amplitude, phase, and polarization of the light signal and decoding said data when the signal is received.

Even though we colloquially call the chip a “DSP”, it is an electronic application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) that performs much more than just signal processing.

Digital Signal Processor

The Benefits of Co-Design

To improve energy efficiency, DSP ASICs must be adaptable and smart, using the least amount of energy to encode/decode information. You can learn more about this subject in one of our previous articles.

The interconnects with the optical engine are another area that can see further optimization. We discuss these improvements in our article about optoelectronic co-design.

Key Features

  • Fit-For-Platform: By owning the laser, PIC, and DSP technology blocks, EFFECT Photonics can increase the integration among all three. There’s even potential to use DSP to directly control the active components of the indium phosphide (InP) platform.
  • Energy Efficiency: The increased integration between DSP and photonics can shorten the RF interconnects within the device, reducing losses and power consumption.
  • Performance: The DSP ASIC will be fine-tuned to the performance requirements of its specific application, from access networks to data center interconnects.