20 July 2022 / by Raza Khan
In the future, 5.5G and 6G wireless networks will enable more complex use cases such as smart cities, autonomous cars and artificial intelligence. Current 5G deployments must increase capacity while decreasing power consumption and latency to support the data required for these technologies. For example, smart manufacturing sites can generate up to 2,200 terabytes (TB) of data a month. Smart sensors and connected equipment collect data every second, and any lag or downtime could result in lost production time and revenue. Semtech’s Tri-Edge™ PAM4 CDR platform addresses these challenges by enabling higher speed optical fiber connections for massive transmission of data that prioritizes more bandwidth, with lower power and lower latency.
Meeting Future Demand With Today’s Technology: Improving Bandwidth While Reducing Power Consumption and Latency
Networks must optimize bandwidth to handle the increased data needed for current or future 5.5G and 6G use cases. For example, streaming one Netflix show requires 25 megabits of data per second (Mbps). However, autonomous cars will generate as much as 40TB of data an hour from cameras, radar and other sensors—the same amount of data as using an iPhone for over 3,000 years. As autonomous cars advance and become more common, data traffic will greatly increase, pushing current infrastructure to maximum capacity. By integrating Semtech’s Tri-Edge solutions with current wireless networks, wireless service providers can double the bandwidth of currently deployed 25 gigabits per second (Gbps) front-haul links and prepare networks to handle these data-intense innovations.
Increased network traffic from connected technology will also increase power consumption. Analyst firm ABI Research reports that while 5G is 90% more efficient than 4G in terms of energy consumption per unit of traffic, 5G base stations require three times more energy to provide the same coverage as a 4G network. The Tri-Edge analog platform is optimized for immediate data transfer by using more than 20% less power consumption over digital signal processor (DSP) technology. By 2027, Tri-Edge solutions could save up to 1TWh of energy and 384,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions from data center and wireless systems optical links each year. This is the energy equivalent of powering 100,000 homes. As more powerful and large-scale use cases come to market, Semtech’s power-saving optical technology will allow future networks to operate more sustainably.
Additionally, as more high-risk use cases such as remote surgeries and robotic process automation come to fruition with 5.5G and 6G, low latency will become even more important. Semtech’s Tri-Edge portfolio enables near-zero latency variation and less than 0.5ns of absolute latency for fast and accurate data transfer. By integrating Tri-Edge into wireless RAN architecture, the ecosystem can lay the foundation for future low-latency and high bandwidth applications.
Looking Forward: Scaling Infrastructure to Connect Everyone, Everywhere
The future of connected, wireless technology is full of exciting possibilities. We will go from simply seeing a virtual world to experiencing it with all five senses. Buildings, transportation and people will communicate seamlessly to create smart cities across the globe. However, the most important part of deploying 5G and future wireless generations is connecting everyone, everywhere. That is why the Tri-Edge portfolio is constantly evolving. By creating scalable, adaptable optical technology for wireless networks, Semtech is supporting current wireless infrastructure while keeping a steady focus on the connected world of tomorrow.
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