Variable-Rate FEC Decoder VLSI Architecture for 400G Rate-Adaptive Optical Communication
Paper i proceeding, 2019
Optical communication systems rely on forward error correction (FEC) to decrease the error rate of the received data. Since the properties of the optical channel will vary over time, a variable FEC coding gain would be useful. For example, if the channel conditions are benign, lower code overhead can be used, effectively increasing the code rate. We introduce a variable-rate FEC decoder architecture that can operate in several different modes, where each mode is linked to code rate and decoding iterations. We demonstrate a decoder implementation that provides a net coding gain range of 9.96–10.38 dB at a post-FEC bit-error rate of 10^-15. For this range, a decoder implemented in a 28-nm process technology offers throughputs in excess of 400 Gbps, decoding latencies below 53 ns and a power dissipation of less than 0.95 W (or 1.3 pJ/information bit).