Portfolio Companies

Aquantia Corporation

10GBASE-T Integrated Circuits

Operating R&D Center

Shareholders in Portfolio Company 
Greylock Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, LSI Corporation (NYSE: LSI), New Enterprise Associates, Pinnacle Ventures, RUSNANO, Venture Tech Alliance

Industry Sector 
Nanoelectronics and Photonics

Production Location 
Design Center in Nizhniy Novgorod

Investment Started:  2012

Total Budget

1.05  bln rubles
Co-investment by RUSNANO
0.75  bln rubles

The development and production of next-generation network transceivers

Aquantia Corporation (Milpitas, USA) is a developer of network chips with a data transfer rate of 10 Gbit/s. The company does not have personal production facilities. Over 100 company employees work in the field of digital and analog signal processing, as well as on the development of integrated circuits and network equipment.

Aquantia was the world's first company to develop and launch Ethernet 10GBASE-T chips.

The company's products are tested and certified by network equipment manufacturers (Cisco, Huawei) and manufacturers of system logic (Intel). The joint Intel and Aquantia chipset is an integrated solution for server boards. It became the best among 39 designs of motherboard and server manufacturers, including Dell, Oracle, and IBM. The company employs contractors such as TSMC, Amcor etc. for chip production.

It also has a research department in Nizhny Novgorod.

At the end of 2017, Aquantia successfully completed an IPO at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

The company is now actively developing and supplying equipment for autonomous cars. The architecture of the super-fast automotive communication system Aquantia Multi-Gig is designed to work with NVIDIA DRIVE Pegasus and DRIVE XAVIER AI systems. 10-Gbit Ethernet is at the core of the MultiGig network. This provides minimum delay in the exchange of data between different nodes of the autonomous car.

Areas of Application

  • High-density rack-mount Ethernet switches
  • LAN-on-Motherboard servers
  • Network cards
  • Ethernet switches

Market

  • Switch manufacturers: Cisco, Juniper, Dell, HP, Brocade, Arista
  • Server manufacturers: Intel, Cisco, Dell, HP, IBM, Oracle
  • Autonomous car manufacturers

Competitive Advantages

  • The company’s equipment allows the use of a copper cable instead of the much more expensive fiber. This allows data transmission at the speed of 10 Gbit/s IEEE 802.3an (10GBASE-T standard)
  • Low cost for consumers, low power consumption, small-size transceivers
  • The best design in the field of server and switch products, according to key customers
  • Dynamic business development, significant server and switch industry market share

From its inception, Aquantia has strived to push the boundaries of the possible. Whereas its competitors have merely taken a brute force approach to solving the 10GBASE-T challenge, leading to high power and large die size, Aquantia’s team of leading experts has taken the high roads of innovation, creating the Mixed-Mode Signal Processing (MMSP) architecture.

This approach has led Aquantia to delivering the highest performance and lowest power 10GBASE-T solution to date. The MMSP’s leading building block is a unique Analog Front-End (AFE) that partially cancels impairments on the incoming signal (such as crosstalk, echo, etc.). As a result of this front-end signal processing, the ensuing Analog-to-Digital Converter (ADC) can be designed with lesser requirements, leading to a lower power and smaller size AFE. Post-ADC, the amount of signal processing needed to be performed on the signal is greatly reduced, which results in a less complex, lower power and smaller die size digital architecture. So differentiated and efficient is this MMSP architecture, that Aquantia’s 1st generation of 10GBASE-T PHYs, designed in 90nm, were already lower power than its competitors designed in the more complex 65nm process node. Leaning on its integration capabilities and its novel MMSP architecture, Aquantia was the 1 st in the industry to sample a monolithic single-chip 10GBASE-T PHY (AQ1002), when the rest of the industry was still toying with multi-chip solutions.

It was also the 1st in the industry to demonstrate the full performance of 10GBASE-T in the 40nm process node. It has since then furthered its leadership by delivering the smallest footprint quad-port 10GBASE-T solution (AQ1402) for high-density switches and the world’s only dual-port solution.