Harmonic intros 1550-nm DWDM

JANUARY 20, 2009 -- The product is designed to enable cable service providers to reuse their existing optical fiber network to more cost-effectively deliver increased bandwidth to subscribers.

JANUARY 20, 2009 -- Harmonic Inc. (search for Harmonic) has introduced the SUPRALink 1550-nm DWDM transmission system. The product is designed to enable cable service providers to reuse their existing optical fiber network to more cost-effectively deliver increased bandwidth to subscribers.

Incorporating patent-pending technology, the new SUPRALink delivers up to a four-fold increase in fiber reach over 1310-nm systems and strikes an optimal performance-to-cost balance, Harmonic says. The company also asserts that SUPRALink is the industry's first system to support up to eight wavelengths per single fiber over link distances of 40 km with optical amplification and 25 km without optical amplification, for up to 1 GHz of both digital and analog content per wavelength.

SUPRALink is intended to enable operators to minimize their capital expenditures when segmenting their networks and overcome limitations in fiber reach and wavelength scalability of alternative downstream CWDM and 1310-nm DWDM options. By addressing these challenges, Harmonic says the new SUPRALink technology enables cost-effective DWDM segmentation for the majority of installed HFC networks, and as a result significantly extends the capacity and longevity of existing HFC infrastructures.

"The ability to utilize 1550-nm DWDM technology to extend fiber reach, and thereby better leverage the already installed HFC plant, could offer cable operators a cost-effective solution that addresses DWDM segmentation in existing network architectures," said Alan Breznick, senior analyst at Heavy Reading.

"Harmonic's SUPRALink system will allow service providers to deploy optical nodes deeper in the network while minimizing the cost of constructing new fiber routes," said Nimrod Ben-Natan, vice president of product marketing, solutions and strategy for Harmonic. "SUPRALink's scalability simplifies network expansion while minimizing an operator's initial investment. The solution provides superior fiber reach, enabling service providers to design and maintain a transmission network in a single wavelength band, resulting in significant operational advantages. In addition, SUPRALink is cost-competitive with existing 1310-nm WDM systems."

An eight-wavelength SUPRALink system delivers an increase in reach of 2.5X to 4X when compared to eight-wavelength 1310-nm WDM systems, Harmonic claims. Operating in the 1550-nm band, SUPRALink is also more immune to impairment mechanisms of 1310-nm WDM systems and as a result is more robust. The system can be scaled in one-wavelength increments to provide a "pay-as-you grow" expansion path. The SUPRALink family of products includes optical transmitters, multiplexers, demultiplexers, and amplifiers.

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