Nortel unveils 40/100G optical system, announces new customers

March 12, 2008
MARCH 12, 2008 -- Nortel today introduced what it claims is the industry's first optical technology to deliver both 40G and 100G network capacity, enabling four times the network throughput immediately while providing the foundation to simply and affordably increase capacity tenfold as required.

MARCH 12, 2008 -- Nortel (search for Nortel) today introduced what it claims is the industry's first optical technology to deliver both 40G and 100G network capacity, enabling four times the network throughput immediately while providing the foundation to simply and affordably increase capacity tenfold as required. This new capability equips carriers to keep pace with dramatically increasing demand from bandwidth-sapping applications like IPTV, Internet video, HD programming, and mobile video phones, say company representatives.

Nortel says its 40G/100G Adaptive Optical Engine is a revolutionary technology platform that enables both 40G and 100G transmission with the same ease and simplicity of today's 10G networks. Currently, the widespread networking speed is 10 Gbits/sec, which can support the bandwidth of 1,000 HDTV channels simultaneously. By increasing that capacity to 40G, carriers can transmit four times the traffic over the same link and 10 times the traffic when evolving to 100G.

"With Nortel's new 40G/100G optical technology, carriers can now increase network bandwidth simply and economically," explains Philippe Morin, president, Metro Ethernet Networks, Nortel. "We are seeing significant demands for bandwidth as a result of business-to-business VPNs and the conversion from analog to high-definition video delivery over the desktop. In addition, every operator's plan to deliver new revenue-generating services, such as IPTV, or to sell the latest video-enabled consumer devices will come to nothing if these exploding bandwidth demands aren't met," he contends. "With the coming era of hyperconnectivity, where every device that should be connected to the network will be connected, the staggering bandwidth demands will only continue upwards."

"Our 40G/100G Adaptive Optical Engine technology not only increases network capacity to accommodate the looming bandwidth demands," Morin continues, "but is the only one that leverages the carriers' existing network investment to provide the most cost-effective optical solution.

At the heart of the system is the ability to easily upgrade existing 10G networks to a 40G network through simple plug-and-play technology components, say company representatives. Other systems on the market that promise to provide 40G require new fiber-optic cables to be buried across the carriers' service area. Among the key firsts of this system include Dual Polarization Quadrature Phase Shift Keying with coherent detection, which allows 40G operation over a 10G network, as well as advanced digital signal processing that removes all compensation requirements from the network. Other approaches require costly equipment that can carry the signals less than half the distance of the Nortel equipment, claim company representatives.

"Nortel's 40G/100G solution is particularly intriguing because it allows carriers to use their existing 10G network with minor upgrades to deliver 40G and all of the new capabilities that affords," notes Michael Howard, principal analyst at Infonetics Research. "The savings in terms of equipment costs, training, maintenance, and operations are reduced accordingly."

The new technology is built on the Optical Multiservice Edge 6500, which enables the migration to a more agile, adaptive, all-optical network. The technology leverages the full value of reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexing (ROADM) for all optical networking with its integrated dispersion compensation capabilities. 10G and 40G transponders allow information-carrying lightwaves to be transmitted beyond 2000 km, nearly twice as far as competing approaches, without breaking down. This requires less equipment to plan for, deploy, and maintain, claim company representatives.

Nortel recently demonstrated the agility benefits of the new technology at the OFC/NFOEC Conference, held on February 24-28, 2008, in San Diego. Nortel demonstrated 10G, 40G, and 100G wavelengths carried over adjacent 50-GHz channels, traversing over 1,000 km of three types of uncompensated fiber.

In related news, two customers, TDC and Neos Networks, have selected the new Nortel technology, and trials with other carriers are currently underway globally.

TDC to meet skyrocketing bandwidth demands across Europe

TDC, Denmark's leading provider of communications solutions, has selected Nortel's new adaptive optical engine initially to carry European network traffic across the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Germany. With this technology, TDC says it will support industry-standard 10G services today as well as next-generation 40G services. The Danish provider confirms it will test 40G products and services with the intent to launch them in late 2008 due to a strong market demand. At the same time, the deployment provides TDC with a clear technology path to 100G.

"The 40G capability preserves our investment in our fiber plant that enables us to meet increasing bandwidth needs easily and also helps us meet the needs of our customers," reports Morten Bangsgaard, vice president, TDC Fixnet Nordic. "Nortel's solution will allow us to leverage adaptive optical technologies to save both capital and operational expenses and to easily expand our services across Europe."

Neos to provide 40G network for UK businesses

Neos Networks is delivering nationwide network capacity to meet customer demand for increasingly advanced applications, such as Internet video and new business communication services. With its new optical network in the UK, based on Nortel's 40G/100G Adaptive Optical Engine, Neos customers can select exactly how much bandwidth they need, when they need it on the network.

Neos is initially deploying a 10G live network, which provides the foundation of the 40G network, and will be trialing the 40G network elements next month.

Neos Networks' portfolio of bandwidth services, running over the new optical network, includes a product called Liquid Bandwidth, which enables customized network offerings with the flexibility to increase or decrease bandwidth seamlessly and quickly when required. Neos Networks, the telecommunications business owned by Scottish and Southern Energy plc, is one of the UK's leading network operators and offers a porfolio of connectivity services, including fast-growing Ethernet services, to meet the commercial needs of UK businesses and wholesale customers.

"Our customers depend on us to deliver reliable, high-speed, very high-bandwidth services on-demand," reports Adrian Pike, managing director of Neos Networks. "Our Liquid Bandwidth product enables us to deliver dynamic Ethernet connectivity to suit their day-to-day business requirements. We chose the Nortel solution for our nationwide optical network because we needed a proven, flexible, and scalable platform to support our Liquid Bandwidth offering," he confirms. "The Nortel platform also allows us to deliver cost-effective point-to-point Gigabit Ethernet 2.5G and 10G services today and enables us to scale to 40G services simply and cost-effectively while providing the most promising migration path to 100G--all with the same network and operational simplicity. This was a critical factor in our selection process."

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