Calix unveils Verizon NG-PON2 platform, the AXOS E9-2 Intelligent Edge System

Calix, Inc. (NYSE: CALX) has unveiled as a commercial product the NG-PON2 platform it hopes to land in Verizon's network. The AXOS E9-2 Intelligent Edge System features a disaggregated architecture that separates control, access, and aggregation, as well as a non-blocking architecture to support significant capacity growth. The result is a platform that collapses access, aggregation, and service edge functions, including routing and subscriber management, into a single system, the company asserts.

Calix, Inc. (NYSE: CALX) has unveiled as a commercial product the NG-PON2 platform it hopes to land in Verizon's network (see "Verizon narrows NG-PON2 choices to Ericsson/Calix and ADTRAN"). The AXOS E9-2 Intelligent Edge System features a disaggregated architecture that separates control, access, and aggregation, as well as a non-blocking architecture to support significant capacity growth. The result is a platform that collapses access, aggregation, and service edge functions, including routing and subscriber management, into a single system, the company asserts.

The E9-2 features a 19-inch rackmount chassis capable of supporting a pair of line cards. Coincidentally, the system features the same number of line card types: the CLX3001 system aggregation and control card and the NG1601 access line card.

The CLX3001 provides management, control, and data plane redundancy as well as Layer 2 switching for both business and residential services and Layer 3 routing for residential services. It also supplies uplink capabilities via a variety of ports, ranging from 40G or 100G QSFP28s to 1G and 10G SFP+ optical transceiver interfaces. (The system also has a pair of SFP interfaces.) Four 100-Gbps interconnect ports support connections to the access line cards for aggregation.

The NG1601 access line card offers 16 ports for either NG-PON2 or XGS-PON support; the system detects which type of optical module the technician has plugged in. The company plans to add GPON support in a future release.

In a typical application, a service provider might load one chassis with a pair of CLX3001 cards to provide redundant control and management, then load additional chassis with however many NG1601 access line cards their service requirements demanded. The chassis would be managed as a single system with a single IP address, regardless of the number of line cards employed. The use of cables to connect chassis together obviates the constraint of backplane bandwidth encountered in conventional optical line terminal (OLT) designs, Calix says.

Use of the AXOS operating system enables the E9-2 to operate within a software-defined networking (SDN) environment for service orchestration. AXOS also helps enable zero-touch provisioning.

The system is designed to easily support both residential and business services. "With NG-PON2 coming to the market early next year, bandwidth intensive applications like 5G mobile backhaul and multi-tenant business locations will be the first to benefit from the technology," said Matt Davis, program director for IDC, via a Calix press release. "As NG-PON2 moves to residential deployment, service providers will have a major opportunity to combine disparate networks and quickly operationalize the delivery of new services. A converged network approach that brings together mobile, business, and residential services onto one will be key to allowing service providers to quickly scale and simplify their operations."

Calix sources said the system should be ready for customers at some point next year. While its Verizon competition, ADTRAN, says it has developed a way to create the tunable transceivers NG-PON2 optical network units (ONUs) will require, Calix isn't as forthcoming. Company sources would only say they are working with Verizon on advancing the technology.

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