OIF Launches Four Innovative Projects Covering a Broad Range of Technologies at Q2 Technical and MA&E Committees Meeting

Fremont, Calif.—June 6, 2023 – At OIF’s hybrid Q2 2023 Technical and MA&E Committees meeting held in Budapest, Hungary, May 9-11, members voted to initiate four new projects spanning multiple technology tracks. Additionally, a new member of the Board of Directors was appointed, a Working Group Chair was re-elected and a WG Vice Chair was appointed.

The volume of activity reinforces OIF’s significant role in the optical networking industry as the sole global forum driving electrical, optical and control interoperability. This interoperability is crucial in enabling a more efficient and reliable network.

The new projects across the multiple technology tracks showcase the breadth of OIF’s value to the industry and ongoing commitment to driving innovation.

“This quarter’s OIF meeting was a clear testament to the organization’s unwavering dedication to progress,” said Cathy Liu, Broadcom Inc and OIF President. “The overall energy and remarkable productivity within each technology track reflected a collective determination to spearhead innovative projects that foster interoperability.”

New Projects

Management of Smart Optical Modules Project: Current system management paradigms require tight coupling between hosts and pluggable optical modules. As module capabilities advance, host software must be updated. This additional development cycle delays the deployment of these advanced capabilities. In multi-vendor environments, it is becoming challenging for the various equipment developers to implement and track all the advanced features implemented by the various module vendors. There is also the requirement by end users for disaggregation of IPoDWDM solutions. This new OIF project will result in a white paper describing a new paradigm that decouples the controller from host software development, enabling faster realization of advanced module capabilities.

Energy Efficient Interfaces Framework Project: This umbrella framework project will study energy-efficient electrical and optical interfaces (sometimes referred to as “Linear” or “Direct Drive”) necessary to support the energy-efficient application requirements prioritized by OIF’s Physical Layer User Group Working Group.

800G/1.6T FlexE Project: This project will define interoperable next-generation FlexE specifications for 800G/1.6T PHY rates for mobile backhaul and data center interconnect applications. It will result in the revision of the OIF-FLEXE-02.2 implementation agreement by adding support for 800Gb/s and 1.6Tb/s FlexE PHYs.

Digital Twin Optical Network as an Enhanced Network Operation Project: Digital twins can enhance and accelerate network transformations, systems and operational process integrations. Verifying the accuracy of configuration or optimization orders provided by Digital Twin Network (DTN) systems is a challenge. This project will result in a white paper that identifies the challenges and technical requirements for digital twin modeling as an enhanced optical network operation. It will specify the relationship between the DTN and network management and control, interface operation, input/output data requirements and data collection – essential steps to broaden the adoption of digital twin use in optical networks.

Guest Speaker

Andreas Gladisch, Vice President Emerging Technologies, Deutsche Telekom, addressed the member audience and shared his perspectives on disaggregation and its significance in the telecommunications industry. He emphasized the necessity for network operators to collaborate in order to achieve success in this area and that by working together, they can reap the benefits of disaggregation and build more agile, flexible and cost-effective networks.

New Member of the Board of Directors

Prior to the meeting, the Board of Directors appointed Robert Stone, Meta Platforms, to fill an open seat on the Board through September 2023.

Technical Committee Working Group Updates

Jia He, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., was re-elected as Chair of the Networking & Operations Working Group and Tom Huber, Nokia, was appointed as Physical & Link Layer Working Group Protocol Vice Chair.


About OIF

OIF is where the optical networking industry’s interoperability work gets done. Celebrating 25 years of effecting forward change in the industry, OIF represents the dynamic ecosystem of 140+ industry leading network operators, system vendors, component vendors and test equipment vendors collaborating to develop interoperable electrical, optical and control solutions that directly impact the industry’s ecosystem and facilitate global connectivity in the open network world. Connect with OIF at @OIForum, on LinkedIn and at


PR Contact:

Leah Wilkinson
Wilkinson + Associates for OIF


Fiber Systems – Summer 2019

Small Wonder – A new implementation agreement for low-power consumption will see small modules push technological barriers

OIF’s Optical Masterclass Series at NGON to Include Updates on 400ZR, Common Electrical I/O, Flex Ethernet & SDN Projects

Fremont, Calif.—May 8, 2019 – At NGON, May 21-23, 2019, OIF experts will kick off the Optical Masterclass Series with a comprehensive update on its 400ZR, Common Electrical I/O (CEI)-112, Flex Ethernet (FlexE) and Software Defined Networking (SDN) projects.

“OIF’s interoperability solutions are vital to the global network and with many of the key network operators in attendance, NGON is the ideal platform to provide updates on OIF’s work in 400ZR, CEI, FlexE and SDN,” said Dave Brown, Nokia and OIF Director of Communications.

The “Optical Masterclass Series – The Optical Internetworking Forum” session is being held Tuesday, May 21, 2019 from 09:00 – 11:00 (NEW TIME AS OF 5/16). Brown and Karl Gass, OIF Physical & Link Layer Working Group Vice Chair, Optical, will discuss how OIF is assuring interoperability in open, agile, next-generation optical networks and provide updates on crucial industry projects.


OIF’s 400ZR project is critical in facilitating the reduction of cost and complexity for high bandwidth data center interconnects and promoting interoperability among optical module manufacturers. This Implementation Agreement (IA) will specify an interoperable digital coherent 400ZR interface targeted at short reach (80 km or more) DWDM amplified noise limited links and unamplified loss limited links.


The CEI project update will include discussion of the multiple 112 Gb/s interfaces being defined by OIF including CEI-112G MCM, XSR, VSR, MR and LR. Applications of these 112 Gb/s interfaces include die-to-die, die-to-OE (optical engine) on package, chip-to-module, chip-to-chip and chip-to-chip long reach over backplane and cables.


OIF continues to lead in FlexE aggregation architectures through its newest FlexE 2.1 project for FlexE over 50GbE PHY applications, an extension to its FlexE 2.0 Implementation Agreement (IA). FlexE 2.1 will specify a 50G FlexE frame and multiplexing format and will address FlexE applications with lower bandwidth needs and provide an implementation foundation for applications including the access layer of the future 5G mobile network.


In November 2018, OIF announced the launch of “Requirements for Integrated Packet Optical SDN.” The project outlines requirements for a multi-layer SDN reference architecture as a use case for packet optical transport networks. It will generate functional requirements, a reference architecture and use cases for packet/optical networks guided by the vision to enable agile, open network solutions that simplify operations and optimize resource utilization.


The session will also include an update on the Integrated Coherent Transmit-Receive Optical Sub Assembly (IC-TROSA) project that defines a standard optical component containing a complete coherent modem. The availability of highly integrated components accelerates the adoption of coherent transmission into additional markets.

Additionally, Gass will participate in Wednesday’s Plenary session, 09:30 – 10:10, “Present View: To the terabit & beyond – practicalities for coherent transmission.” Also on Wednesday, from 14:35 – 15:30, Brown will speak on the “Open Source Approach: Looking at disaggregation as a pathway for multi-vendor cooperation, interoperability and driving enhanced network interfaces” panel.

Check the status of OIF’s current work here.

About OIF
Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) is where the optical networking industry’s interoperability work gets done. Celebrating 20 years of effecting progressive change in the industry, OIF represents the dynamic ecosystem of 100+ industry leading network operators, system vendors, component vendors and test equipment vendors, all collaborating to develop interoperable electrical, optical and control solutions that directly impact the industry’s ecosystem and facilitate global connectivity in the open network world. Connect with OIF at @OIForum, on LinkedIn and at


PR Contact:
Leah Wilkinson
Wilkinson + Associates for OIF
Office: 703-907-0010


OIF Launches Flex Coherent DWDM Framework Effort, Elects New Officers

Members of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) are working to specify a framework for Flex Coherent DWDM Transmission in the application fields of long haul, metro, and data center inter-connection. The framework will build upon work the OIF completed for 100G LH DWDM and provide guidance for 400G.

“We’ve discussed the hardware implications of SDN for a couple years now,” said Junjie Li, of China Telecom and OIF board member. “We need to move away from fixed performance transceivers in order to provide Service Providers with a flexible solution, complete with software ‘knobs’ that can be dialed-in to achieve the desired performance.”

Dynamic networks require flexibility in reach, data rate, and spectral efficiency. This can be accomplished through the following flexible transceiver attributes: modulation formats, symbol rates, and number of subcarriers. Flex Coherent DWDM will outline a software-defined optics ecosystem that initially leverages past and current OIF projects for tunable lasers, high bandwidth PMQ modulated transmitters and integrated coherent receivers. The Flex Coherent DWDM Transmission will start with the following modulation formats suitable for different scenarios; QPSK, 8QAM, 16QAM for long haul and metro applications and 32QAM, 64QAM for data center inter-connection applications.

Board Elections

The OIF announced the results of its recent leadership elections, welcoming Peter Landon of BTI Systems as the chair of the Networking & Operations Working Group committee for 2-year term.

Newly elected to the Board of Directors are Ian Betty of Ciena for a 2-year term, Tom Issenhuth of Microsoft for a 2-year term and Mike Tessaro of Qorvo for a 1-year term. Junjie Li of China Telecom was re-elected to the board for a 1-year term. John McDonough of NEC America will serve as president. Dave Brown of Alcatel-Lucent continues to serve as VP of Marketing and Dave Stauffer of Kandou Bus continues to serve as secretary/treasurer.

OIF Day at Huawei Technologies

In conjunction with the Forum’s recent quarterly meeting in Shanghai, the OIF and Huawei Technologies hosted a day of interactive and educational workshops featuring OIF and Huawei Technologies subject matter experts. Topics covered included OIF projects and technical work, intelligent optical networking, and 400G. The exclusive event was focused on helping attendees understand system vendor challenges and strategies, strengthening member/executive support for the OIF and establishing an input and validation process for strategic/project planning.

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at

OIF moves to raise coherent transmission baud rate

Gazettabyte – Roy Rubenstein

May 21, 2015

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) has started modulator and receiver specification work to enhance coherent optical transmission performance. The OIF initiative aims to optimise modulator and receiver photonics operating at a higher baud rate than the current 32 Gigabaud (Gbaud).”We want the two projects to look at those trade-offs and look at how we could build the particular components that could support higher individual channel rates,” says Karl Gass of Qorvo and the OIF physical and link layer working group vice chair, optical.

Karl Gass

The OIF members, which include operators, internet content providers, equipment makers, and optical component and chip players, want components that work over a wide bandwidth, says Gass. This will allow the modulator and receiver to be optimised for the new higher baud rate.

“Perhaps I tune it [the modulator] for 40 Gbaud and it works very linearly there, but because of the trade-off I make, it doesn’t work very well anywhere else,” says Gass. “But I’m willing to make the trade-off to get to that speed.” Gass uses 40 Gbaud as an example only, stressing that much work is required before the OIF members choose the next baud rate.

“We want the two projects to look at those trade-offs and look at how we could build the particular components that could support higher individual channel rates”

The modulator and receiver optimisations will also be chosen independent of technology since lithium niobate, indium phosphide and silicon photonics are all used for coherent modulation.

The OIF has not detailed timescales but Gass says projects usually take 18 months to two years.

Meanwhile, the OIF has completed two projects, the specification outputs of which are referred to as implementation agreements (IAs).

One is for integrated dual polarisation micro-intradyne coherent receivers (micro-ICR) for the CFP2. At OFC 2015, several companies detailed first designs for coherent line side optics using the CFP2 module.

The micro-ICR IA also defines a low-speed SPI bus interface to control the trans-impedence amplifiers in the coherent receiver. The digital bus interface enables circuit settings to be changed with operating temperature. With the first generation coherent receiver design, analogue signalling was used for their control, says Gass. The smaller micro-ICR has a reduced pin count and so uses a narrower digital bus to control the circuits.The second completed IA is the 4×5-inch second-generation 100 Gig long-haul DWDM transmission module.

“This [module] is considered an intermediate step with the almost immediate goal being to go to a CFP module,” says Gass.