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26 Apr 2017

The Panduit Portfolio

Jose Castro talks to John Bensalhia about Panduit's products and future prospects for the rest of the year as well as his forthcoming appearance at Data Centre World Asia Hong Kong 2017

Pullout quote: "Because of the exciting advances in optical media and transceivers, today’s IT managers face multiple options on how to deploy their optical networks. All these options have an impact on cost, latency, speed, energy efficiency, and reliability."

Great strides have been made in the field of optical media. This means that the IT managers of today now have a greater range of methods to use their optical networks. But as Jose Castro, manager of Panduit's Fiber Research Group explains, this greater choice can have follow-through effects.

"Optical network technologies for data centre applications are evolving to provide the speed required for future computing and storage systems," says Jose. "Transceivers using more efficient modulation schemes and/or multiple wavelengths are being developed for single mode and multimode fiber to enable 50Gbps/200Gbps/400Gbps data rates. Also, a new category of multimode fiber, designated OM5, has been developed to enable multiwavelength transmission." "Because of these exciting advances in optical media and transceivers, today’s IT managers face multiple options on how to deploy their optical networks. All these options have an impact on cost, latency, speed, energy efficiency, and reliability. In the forthcoming presentation at Data Centre World Asia Hong Kong 2017, we will review the salient features of these future solutions and the applicability for different types of data centres."

An electrical engineer with a Ph.D. from the University of Arizona in 2006, Jose joined Panduit in 2011 as a research engineer for the Fiber Optics Group before becoming manager of the Panduit Fiber Research Group. "In my role, I collaborate with a team of researchers of diverse backgrounds including physics, optical, electrical, and mechanical engineering, to provide innovative solutions to our customers."

Jose's field of research in Panduit during the last years have focused on optical fiber design and testing, optical fiber communication, transceivers and optical imaging systems. Recent team achievements of Panduit R&D include the development of advanced optical modulation systems over 64 Gbps for multimode fiber (MMF) channels, evaluation of the impact of spectral dependence of differential mode delay on channel performance, modal-chromatic dispersion compensation, BiDi and SWDM4 transmission, interaction of laser chirp and dispersion in single mode channels, and advanced image processing techniques for insertion loss estimation for field terminated connectors.

Prior to joining Panduit, Jose was a research professor at the University of Arizona where he advised Ph.D students work in areas of research such as optical waveguides, optical gratings, holograms, and solar collectors. Jose is also currently the technical editor for Fibre Channel T11.2 Physical Interfaces standard which is developing a new physical interface PI-7 64G FC using PAM-4 systems over multimode and single mode fiber.

Panduit was founded in 1955 by Jack Caveney. Jose says that the first company product uniquely organised control panel wiring and allowed new cables to be added quickly and neatly. Since then, Panduit has introduced thousands of problem solving new products and remained committed to providing innovative electrical and network infrastructure solutions. Among those solutions. Panduit current portfolio includes cable and wire management, DCIM, control panel systems, electrical and optical high speed cabling, integrated network zone system, wireless sensors, industrial network visualisation and analytics, power and grounding systems, and preconfigured micro data centre.

Panduit cultivates long-term strategic alliances with industry leaders, including Cisco Systems, EMC, IBM, and Rockwell Automation, and participates actively in standard to support the development, optimisation, and validation of future solutions for our customers.

In addition, Panduit has built strong partnerships with the academy, collaborating with researchers in universities such as Stanford, CREOL and Chalmers producing publications in prestigious technical journals that helped to develop future technologies such as faster modulation systems in optical channels.

"Today, customers look to Panduit as a trusted advisor who works with them to address their most critical business challenges within their Data Centre, Enterprise, and Industrial environments," says Jose. "Our proven reputation for quality and technology leadership coupled with a robust ecosystem of partners across the world enables Panduit to deliver comprehensive solutions that unify the physical infrastructure to help our customers achieve operational and financial goals."

This year, Panduit released its HD Flex 2.0 Fiber Cabling System, a high-density enclosure to optimise data centre space. "It has an innovative cable management, such as split trays, front and back access, that provides flexible and reliable means to to service the network connections without disrupting adjacent connections," explains Jose.

Also new this year is a new line of cabinets, Net-Verse Cabinet line, which is designed to offer flexibility and density for data centre applications. In addition,

fiber dispersion reference modules have also been released. "The application of these modules is stress testing of 10G, 40G and 100G transceivers," says Jose. "We have also just released new modules to test SWDM4 transceivers. These modules are used by transceiver manufacturers, to evaluate transceiver performance under standard compliant channels with designed worst-case modal dispersion and with worst-case modal-chromatic dispersion interaction."

Later this year, Panduit will bring out a completely redesigned version of its OptiCam tool. This tool assists the user during the field termination process of Panduit’s pre-polished OptiCam connector system.

"It was developed by Panduit’s corporate R&D team and is the first of its kind to utilise image processing technology," says Jose. "The tool uses novel algorithms to assist the operator in real time during the termination process, and provides a pass/fail message and the insertion loss value after the termination is completed. The ability to estimate the loss of the connector eliminates the need for testing the installed optical channel from both ends. This new tool reduces installation cost and improves the reliability of networks using field terminated connectors."

Another solution in the Panduit pipeline during this year is in the field of power and thermal control and monitoring. "In particular, I can mention that our line of wireless sensors, SynapSense, will be enhancing their intelligent capabilities in cooling unit communication and optimisation," reveals Jose. "Also, SynsapSense will be expanding their control capabilities to address a larger variety of cooling infrastructures."

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