Sunset Digital, a provider of fiber-optic broadband connectivity, will use a $24 million award under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act broadband stimulus program to install 100-Gbps technology from Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) The upgraded backbone network will support the provision of advanced services for Sunset Digital’s service provider, enterprise, and residential customers throughout northeast Tennessee.
The carrier received the $24 million in broadband stimulus funds from the Rural Utility Service’s Broadband Initiatives Program. The project aims to enable a backbone network capable of fully supporting the delivery of broadband access to approximately 2500 underserved homes, schools, emergency responders, government, financial organizations, and medical institutions in the area. Work on the network expansion should be completed in 2015, “if not sooner,” according to Ciena.
Sunset Digital will deploy Ciena’s 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and use Ciena’s management offering for simplified service activation, which includes service delivery, service visualization, and network monitoring.
“Demand for high-speed, high-capacity bandwidth services is increasing not only in large metropolitan areas, but also in rural areas like those served by Sunset Digital,” said Paul Elswick, president at Sunset Digital. “Even those providers that do operate here cannot purchase the bandwidth they require at low enough cost. By providing greater broadband access to our customers, Ciena’s 100G coherent optical will help position us to better serve our community and help spur economic development in the region.”
“High-speed broadband connectivity has become critical to the economic health and development of any region by enabling advanced applications for healthcare, government, and commerce,” added Chad Whalen, vice president and general manager, North America field organization at Ciena. “In building a 100G optical backbone now, Sunset Digital is helping less-urbanized areas of the Southeastern U.S. become immediately compatible with modern broadband commerce, and enabling them to grow seamlessly as technology changes and the demand increases for even more bandwidth capacity.”
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