FOX-C program aims to develop flexible optical network technology

2013-02-11 18:21:10

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JDSU StrataSync offers cloud-based network test instrument management
Continuing a trend toward cloud-based test and measurement begun with its PacketPortal product, JDSU (NASDAQ: JDSU) (TSX: JDU) has unveiled StrataSync, a way for network operators to manage and analyze data from JDSU test instruments via the cloud.Moving network test management to the cloud provides a variety of advantages, JDSU asserts:It improves network visibility by centralizing data collection.It makes test and measurement more efficient and cost-effective by automating previously manual functions such as tracking, updating, and recording data from every test instrument.It enables technicians to access data easily and more quickly discover and resolve network issues. Technicians can stay current on network health while in the field.It automates the tracking, management, and reporting of the test instruments. Test instruments can be reconfigured and updated quickly and efficiently. Data can be stored and reported from a central location."When our network customers are troubleshooting a network issue, it has to be done right the first time. Millions of people around the world rely on them and expect their network connections to work well," said David Heard, president of Communications Test and Measurement at JDSU. "Moving more network monitoring to the cloud with new solutions like StrataSync helps ensure that our customers get the best value out of their network assets while letting them focus more time on providing high-quality service."
Tata Communications adds 100G to TGN-Atlantic submarine cable system
Mumbai-based Tata Communications (NYSE: TCL) says it will soon support 100-Gbps services on its TGN-Atlantic submarine fiber-optic cable system from New York to London. Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) supplied the coherent transmission technology via its 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and its GeoMesh submarine network portfolio.The TGN-Atlantic upgrade is the first of several planned deployments of 100-Gbps optical transport technology on Tata Communications Global Network (TGN). The fiber-optic network consists of 210,000 km of terrestrial and undersea fiber and links countries representing 99.7% of the world’s GDP, Tata says.“The move to 100G coherent technology on our TGN-Atlantic cable system demonstrates our leadership in global network infrastructure,” says Genius Wong, senior vice president of global network services at Tata Communications. “Based on Ciena’s GeoMesh, this major deployment will bring maximum bandwidth, lower latencies, higher uptimes, and seamless scalability for carriers and enterprises, today and in the future.”Ciena says it has shipped 20,000 coherent 40G/100G line interfaces to more than 100 customers, with more than 20 million coherent kilometers deployed. Meanwhile, Tata Communications is the second GeoMesh customer Ciena has announced this month (see “Iceland’s Farice upgrades submarine and terrestrial networks via Ciena”). “Our GeoMesh solution is designed to help operators like Tata Communications simplify their global networks by removing traditional network seams that inefficiently linked submarine networks to terrestrial networks,” says Ed McCormack, vice president and general manager, submarine systems at Ciena. “GeoMesh makes networks more cost-effective, reliable, and lower in latency.”The 100-Gbps capabilities on the New York-London route are expected to be in full service during the first half of 2013.
FOX-C program aims to develop flexible optical network technology
An international consortium that includes France Telecom Orange, optical technology vendors, and universities will attempt to develop flexible optical add/drop multiplexers and optical crossconnects as part of the FOX-C program. The three-year effort is being funded by the European Union as part of its FP7 program.Carriers require more flexible fiber-optic networks to respond to rapidly changing user demands and increasing bandwidth growth. New optical switch technology will be necessary to not only rapidly switch wavelengths, but both the superchannels expected to be necessary for data rates beyond 100 Gbps as well as the subcarriers within these superchannels. In particular, an additional grooming level will be required in the optical domain to increase switching granularity.The FOX-C (for “flexible optical cross-connect) effort will have two goals:design, develop, and evaluate a functional system prototype of flexible add/drop multiplexers (FOADMs) and flexible optical cross-connects (FOXCs) with switching granularity at the optical subcarrier level  identify the right transport schemes to support such switching granularity and evaluate the overall optical network approach in terms of cost and energy consumption.The consortia members will target the ability to groom, switch, and transport 10-Gbps subcarriers within high-capacity superchannels. This will require work at three transmission levels: the subcarriers, their superchannel, and groups of superchannels combined in a spectrally efficient way to create fiber capacities in the multi-terabit per second range.The proposed flexible switching node architecture will be based on a dual-stage pass-through and select scheme. This approach will combine a coarse switching stage with spectrally adaptive characteristics, and a fine resolution switching stage able to drop and add individual lower-rate tributaries. The fine resolution stage will require novel approaches in terms of filtering elements with ultra-fine resolution as well as processing and signal regenerative subsystems, the consortium members say.The cost and power efficiencies of the proposed approach also will be evaluated. Final system testing and demonstration of the FOX-C developments will be performed at Orange Labs in Lannion, France.In addition to France Telecom-Orange, other FOX-C participants include Finisar (which has already developed a flexible-grid wavelength-selective switch, called FlexGrid), W-Onesys, Optronics, Athens Information Technology centre, ETH Zurich, Aston University, Hebrew University, Tyndall National Institute, and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.“The need to provide ever higher capacity for our customers, while making our long-haul optical networks more flexible to save capex and opex, is essential for the business of Orange,” stated Alain Maloberti, vice-president of Orange Labs Network at France Telecom-Orange. “Our participation in the ICT-FP7-call8 FOX-C project will drive our innovation in this important area, while providing France Telecom-Orange with more experience in 400G/1T transport and more skills in flexible optical networking at ultra-high data rates, making our domestic and international networks future-proof, energy-efficient and cost effective.”
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