Windstream Wholesale sends 1-Tbps wavelength 540 km on live network

March 13, 2023
The trial leveraged a Coherent Interconnect Module 8 (CIM 8) optical module from Acacia, now part of Cisco.

Windstream Wholesale says it has demonstrated transmission of a 1-Gbps wavelength over 541 km of the service provider’s Intelligent Converged Optical Network (ICON) between Dallas and Tulsa. The trial leveraged a Coherent Interconnect Module 8 (CIM 8) optical module from Acacia, now part of Cisco.

The Windstream team also demonstrated 800 Gbps over 1,082 km using the same module. Acacia recently announced that it has begun shipments of the CIM 8, which is designed to support up to 1.2 Tbps (see "Acacia shipping 1.2-Tbps CIM 8 optical module").

“With this trial, Windstream Wholesale and Acacia have broken through the terabit limit, once again demonstrating the power and benefit of an open, disaggregated network,” said Art Nichols, chief technology officer for Windstream. “Our success here further validates Windstream Wholesale’s early adoption of the latest evolution advancements of coherent pluggables, and our strong partnership with Acacia enables us to understand and meet the rapidly evolving bandwidth needs of our customers.”

The two companies had previously collaborated on a trial of 400ZR+ optical modules (see “Windstream Wholesale runs 400G ZR+ transmission more than 1000 km in live network”). "It's great to see the industry fully embracing and advancing pluggable coherent modules, a strategic initiative driven by Windstream,” commented Kim Papakos, principal optical strategist for Windstream Wholesale. “The technological advancements and learnings made in 400G ZR - QSFP-DD 0 dBm are now being applied to the High-Performance category, leading to a substantial advancement, hitting all the key metrics of capacity, performance, power, size, and consumption model."

“As Windstream Wholesale is demonstrating, our CIM 8 module is breaking the terabit threshold with deployable performance on a real network,” said Benny Mikkelsen, chief technology officer at Acacia. “By leveraging silicon photonics, we’ve been able to achieve the power consumption needed to bring the CIM 8 into a pluggable form factor and that is going to help Windstream cost-effectively meet their customers’ growing bandwidth demands.”

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About the Author

Stephen Hardy | Editorial Director and Associate Publisher, Lightwave

Stephen Hardy is editorial director and associate publisher of Lightwave and Broadband Technology Report, part of the Lighting & Technology Group at Endeavor Business Media. Stephen is responsible for establishing and executing editorial strategy across the both brands’ websites, email newsletters, events, and other information products. He has covered the fiber-optics space for more than 20 years, and communications and technology for more than 35 years. During his tenure, Lightwave has received awards from Folio: and the American Society of Business Press Editors (ASBPE) for editorial excellence. Prior to joining Lightwave in 1997, Stephen worked for Telecommunications magazine and the Journal of Electronic Defense.

Stephen has moderated panels at numerous events, including the Optica Executive Forum, ECOC, and SCTE Cable-Tec Expo. He also is program director for the Lightwave Innovation Reviews and the Diamond Technology Reviews.

He has written numerous articles in all aspects of optical communications and fiber-optic networks, including fiber to the home (FTTH), PON, optical components, DWDM, fiber cables, packet optical transport, optical transceivers, lasers, fiber optic testing, and more.

You can connect with Stephen on LinkedIn as well as Twitter.

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