Alcatel announces major contract wins

July 18, 2001
July 18, 2001--Alcatel was selected by Dominion Telecom to provide end-to-end optical solutions for Dominion Telecom's North American network. Alcatel also announced a contract worth $100 million to upgrade the Southern Cross Cable Network.

Alcatel (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA), a provider of intelligent optical networking, was selected by Dominion Telecom to provide end-to-end optical solutions for Dominion Telecom's North American network. Alcatel also announced a contract worth $100 million to upgrade the Southern Cross Cable Network, which extends from Australia and New Zealand to the United States.

Dominion Telecom, a subsidiary of Dominion (NYSE: D), selected Alcatel as the primary supplier for a major North American optical network. Alcatel will provide long-haul optical solutions, including Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) systems, Synchronous Optical Network (SONET) multi-service systems, optical fiber cables and connectivity elements. Alcatel's unique integrated, end-to-end optical networking capability will allow Dominion to deploy a cost-effective and flexible services platform to meet its growing customer needs. Dominion Telecom's new network, connecting Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Toledo, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg and Washington, D.C., will be complete in 2001.

Dominion will be deploying Alcatel's TeraLight cabled fibers, which operate at 40 gigabits per second. This advanced non-zero dispersion fiber is optimized for use in DWDM architectures and will outfit Dominion's network with the bandwidth necessary to grow with its customers. In addition to TeraLight cable, Dominion also plans to use Alcatel's passive interconnection solutions including watertight splice closures and the Optical Modular Distribution Frame to connect the cable network to the SONET and DWDM equipment.

Along with these cable and interconnection solutions, Dominion will also deploy the Alcatel 1603 SMX SONET multi-service transport system and the advanced long-haul capabilities of the Alcatel 1640 Optical Add-Drop Multiplexer (OADM). The 1603 SMX offers Dominion a low cost, high-capacity, metro transport solution, while the 1640 OADM provides Dominion with cost-effective, long-haul DWDM capabilities in the core of its network.

Alcatel's relationship with Dominion Telecom dates back to Dominion's initial involvement in optical network infrastructure. In June of 1999, when Dominion Telecom was known as VPS Communications, Inc., a subsidiary of Virginia Power, the company signed its first agreement for Alcatel DWDM equipment. Since that time, Alcatel has been a key supplier for Dominion's network builds.

Alcatel was also awarded a contract by Southern Cross Cable Network worth more than $100 million to upgrade the Southern Cross Cable Network with 10Gbit/s DWDM. Alcatel will implement terrestrial and submarine 10Gbit/s technology for a 30,000 km optical network, connecting the United States to the Asia Pacific, using a combination of FEC and Super FEC technologies.

Alcatel will equip the third fiber pair in the Southern Cross network with 10Gbit/s capacity per wavelength. Alcatel will supply submarine line DWDM terminals and terrestrial SDH equipment -- both operating at 10Gbit/s. The upgrade of the Southern Cross Cable Network is made possible by using Alcatel Super FEC (Super Forward Error Correction) technology for submarine terminals.

Super FEC is able to both supervise and correct the detected errors of the signal transmission along the system for larger transmission bands than 2.5Gbit/s, making it possible to send wavelengths operating at 10Gbit/s over submersible plant (cable and repeaters) that was initially designed to operate at 2.5Gbit/s. The network will also benefit from multiplexers dedicated for high-speed and fully secured core transport systems with the Alcatel 10 Gbit/s multi-service node. Thanks to its non-blocking and powerful architecture, this system allows the choice of the most suitable network configuration for evolving network requirements as well as cost reduction and enhanced service quality.

The Southern Cross contract covers two phases. The first involves adding 50Gbit/s (5x10Gbit/s) to the initial total network capacity of 80Gbit/s. The second phase will add a further 110Gbit/s of capacity (11x10Gbit/s) to reach a total of 240Gbit/s of fully protected capacity. The two phases are expected to be completed by early 2003.

The Southern Cross network connects the U.S. mainland, Hawaii, Fiji, New Zealand and Australia. It went into service November 2000 providing Australasia with a fully protected direct link to the heart of the Internet in California.

Alcatel has been the major supplier for the construction of the network and has been responsible for the undersea electronics, the cable and all terminal equipment in the landing stations, including the SDH transmission network equipment and the end-to-end network management system.

Alcatel's optics business comprises terrestrial and submarine transmission systems, fiber optics, optical components and microwave radio links. Current contracts include the most advanced undersea networks in the world today: FLAG Atlantic-1 and Apollo systems in the Atlantic, Japan-US and Southern Cross transpacific systems, the MAC and MAYA-1 systems in the Americas and the SAT-3 around Africa.

About Dominion Telecom:

Dominion Telecom is a facilities-based, inter-exchange and local carrier that provides broadband solutions (private line, wavelengths, dark fiber, Internet and collocation) to wholesale customers throughout the eastern United States. The company is expanding its fiber-optic network from its current 35,000 fiber miles (3,600 route miles) to more than 800,000 fiber miles (9,000 route miles). For more information, visit www.dominiontel.com.

About Southern Cross:

Southern Cross Cables Limited (SCCL) is an independent company responsible for the design, construction, marketing and management of the Southern Cross Cable Network. The Southern Cross Cable Network consists of 28,900km of submarine cable and 500 optical repeaters (placed every 40-70km to boost signals), as well as 1,600km of terrestrial cable and nine cable stations (two each in Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii and the US mainland, and one in Fiji).

About Alcatel:

Alcatel builds next generation networks, delivering integrated end-to-end voice and data networking solutions to established and new carriers, as well as enterprises and consumers worldwide. With 110,000 employees and sales of EURO 31 billion in 2000, Alcatel operates in more than 130 countries. For more information, www.alcatel.com.

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