WaveSmith Networks unveils the Distributed Node multiservice switch product family

May 21, 2001
May 21, 2001--WaveSmith Networks announced the details of its multiservice switch. The Distributed Node (DN) multiservice switch product family is designed to help carriers sustain the growth of their legacy systems, and provide the means to leverage that infrastructure into next-generation IP/MPLS services.

WaveSmith Networks announced the details of its multiservice switch. The Distributed Node (DN) multiservice switch product family is designed to help carriers sustain the growth of their legacy systems, and provide the means to leverage that infrastructure into next-generation IP/MPLS services. The DN family is built from the ground-up to provide carriers with a level of form factor, scalability, reliability, and IP/MPLS migration.

Legacy multiservice switches exist in great volume throughout every central office (CO), in almost every large carrier network. The market for legacy multiservice switches was $7 billion dollars in 2000 according to Vertical Systems Group. Carriers need to continue to rollout existing, revenue-generating services, while at the same time, plan for the eventual migration to IP/MPLS.

The DN product family delivers several unique multiservice innovations: form factor, the Distributed Optical Backplane and High Speed Serial Core, the WaveCore OS, and the Open Call Model. The DN4100 is designed for deployment in carrier central offices. The DN2100's small form factor was built to be rolled-out in space constrained collocation/data center facilities.

Form Factor

The DN4100 at 7.5 inches in height and the DN2100 at just 3.5 inches high or one-tenth the size of existing products, deliver 7.6G bit/sec of capacity per vertical inch of rack space. They deliver up to 600 percent greater capacity-to-footprint or port density than other legacy platforms. The DN4100 only consumes 250 watts of power to operate, while the DN2100 consumes 160 watts. Compare this to current solutions that use 1,000-3,000 watts of power or more.

Integrated switching and processing functions, miniaturized connectors and, patent-pending hardware designs make this possible. This allows carriers to lower the operational expense of their network making existing and new services more profitable. In terms of capital expenditure, the DN product family delivers better than 50 percent per-port cost savings compared with existing products. In many cases an incumbent solution requires multiple chassis and shelves to support the same service mix that a single DN platform can carry.

Distributed Optical Backplane and High Speed Serial Core

Using WaveSmith's patent protected Distributed Optical Backplane, any combination of DN2100s and DN4100s can be interconnected or "stacked" to deliver unprecedented scalability. Shelves can be tied together across different racks up to 50 feet apart using the Distributed Optical Backplane technology which can scale up to 320G bit/sec, supporting hundreds of ports ranging from DS1 to OC-48c. Up to five shelves can be managed as a single switching node. Each connection between shelves supports redundant 30G bit/sec links, fully protected and fully meshed for a total of 60G bit/sec shelf-to-shelf.

At the core of the product is a high-speed serial fabric that offers deterministic, bit-transparent switching capacity. This allows the DN family to be used in ATM, TDM, Frame Relay, or IP/MPLS applications. This is a key piece of technology that allows the DN family to enable customers to migrate from ATM based services to IP/MPLS with minimal disruption.

WaveCore OS

The DN4100 brings telephony-grade reliability to a data-switching platform. Multiservice networks fail too easily and do not support hitless upgrade capability that underlies true telephony-grade non-stop system reliability. Hardware and software fault-tolerance are the key to network reliability, yet most legacy multiservice platforms are based on operating systems that can completely fail at any time and cannot be upgraded or repaired without first taking the system down and then restarting.

While legacy multiservice switches have only looked at hardware reliability, the DN product family has both total hardware redundancy and non- stop software reliability. WaveCore OS is designed from the ground up with fault-tolerance and the ability to support in-service upgrades. It uses a microkernel architecture with protected memory regions and object-oriented message passing to eliminate the vulnerabilities of traditional operating system design. With the WaveCore OS, if a software element fails or changes, other software processes are not disrupted nor is the system taken down. The switch should never need to go down.

Open Call Model

The DN product family has an Open Call Model, allowing signaling methods to be added or changed in-service. It allows native control of different services and traffic types across the multiservice environment. The Open Call Model essentially collapses the network control plane for managing connection setup of ATM, TDM, frame relay and IP circuits and services. It allows each technology to control connections using its own most appropriate techniques.

The open call model also allows providers to control network elements using established Operational System Support (OSS) tools. With a CORBA interface to the DN4100 and DN2100, providers can achieve flow-through management that ties network elements directly to their service provisioning, billing and back-office support systems.

The DN4100 and DN2100 will be in beta in June 2001 and FCS in Q4 2001. Pricing will start at $28,000 for a fully functional system.

About WaveSmith Networks:

WaveSmith Networks, based in Acton, MA, is focused on redefining multiservice switching that enables carriers to build out their existing infrastructures by rapidly and more efficiently distributing new optical core capacity with telephony-grade reliability. For more information, visit www.wavesmithnetworks.com.

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