AAG picks Ciena for transpacific submarine cable upgrade

The Asia America Gateway (AAG) consortium says it recently selected Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) for a 100G expansion to its transpacific submarine cable network to address the growing demand for anywhere, anytime broadband access.

The Asia America Gateway (AAG) consortium says it recently selected Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) for a 100G expansion to its transpacific submarine cable network to address the growing demand for anywhere, anytime broadband access.

AAG is a 20,000-km undersea cable system connecting Southeast Asia with the U.S. mainland, across the Pacific Ocean via Guam and Hawaii. It provides connectivity between Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Hong Kong SAR, Philippines, Guam, Hawaii and the U.S. West Coast.

AAG will use Ciena’s converged packet-optical transport platform to add multi-terabit data capacity, and enable AAG’s network to reliably meet the demands of on-demand data networking services and traffic growth driven by mobile applications, high-definition video, and cloud computing. Capacity demand within Asia and on transpacific routes is forecast to grow at a 33% compound annual growth rate – or an increase of more than five times – between 2014 and 2020, Ciena asserts.

The AAG submarine cable system was designed to serve as an alternative and complementary system for links between Southeast Asia to the United States. The system offers a route that avoids the hazardous Pacific Ring, thus mitigating the effects from natural disasters such as earthquake earthquakes or tsunamis. AAG is also known as a direct terabit submarine cable system that offers competitive latency between Southeast Asia and the United States.

The AAG consortium will deploy Ciena’s GeoMesh submarine network architecture, including the 6500 packet-optical platform, powered by WaveLogic coherent optics with Flexible Grid technology. With Ciena’s plug-and-play programmable network elements and 100G coherent technology, the AAG consortium is able to cost-effectively extend the lifetime lifespan of its network by increasing the ultimate cable capacity by as much as three times the original design capacity in some segments, the vendor claims.

In addition, AAG will employ Ciena’s OneControl unified management system which, together with the integrated test set capabilities of WaveLogic, will provide end-to-end network management and visibility for early detection, diagnosis, and prioritization of any faults, ensuring that the cable system operators can resolve issues proactively and maintain network availability.

Ciena is also providing installation and commissioning via its Specialist Services portfolio as part of this turnkey project.

"The AAG system provides critical connectivity between multiple countries in Asia and the United States, so it is critical that our network is highly reliable and capable of supporting our evolving needs," Mohamad Izani Karim, Management Committee Chairman, AAG. "Ciena’s packet-optical and unified management solutions allow us to cost-effectively transform our infrastructure to a scalable, flexible and programmable network to support the high-bandwidth applications that our customers demand."

Ciena is at least the third systems vendor to work on the cable system since its launch. The system's consortium chose Alcatel-Lucent and NEC to deploy the submarine network (see "Alcatel-Lucent, NEC win $500 million submarine cable network contract"). Subsequently, Mitsubishi Electric and Alcatel-Lucent received upgrade contracts (see "Asia America Gateway undersea cable system to get 40-Gbps upgrade via Mitsubishi Electric" and "Alcatel-Lucent to upgrade Asia America Gateway") before Ciena came aboard.

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