Optium touts mixed channel plan WSS-based ROADM

FEBRUARY 21, 2008 -- Optium says its MCP capability will enable users to change the channel plan of a WSS ROADM on the fly, allowing operators to future proof their networks as traffic deployment evolves from 10 Gbits/sec to 40 Gbits/sec to 100 Gigabit Ethernet.

FEBRUARY 21, 2008 -- Optical subsystem supplier Optium Corp. (search for Optium) today announced development of what it claims is the industry's first Mixed Channel Plan (MCP) wavelength selective switch (search for WSS)-based reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexer (search for ROADM).

MCP will be available on Optium's recently announced High Resolution WSS platform. Enabled by Optium's proprietary liquid crystal-on-silicon (LCoS)-based WSS technology, MCP will give users the ability to change the channel plan of the WSS ROADM on the fly, allowing operators to future proof their networks as traffic deployment evolves from 10 Gbits/sec to 40 Gbits/sec to 100 Gigabit Ethernet (100 GbE), say company representatives. In addition, Optium's High Resolution WSS platform with MCP will allow a channel plan to be switched in the field between ITU spacings of 50 GHz, 100 GHz, or an arbitrary mix of the two. Product sampling will take place over the next several months.

Optium says its LCoS-based WSS technology provides virtually a seamless spectrum that can be reconfigured through software. This core technology will allow for future MCP enhancements, including the implementation of customer specific channel plans for specialized applications and channel contouring, where the bandwidth of a channel may be tuned to optimize system performance.

"The key market driver behind our MCP and High Resolution WSS platform is the accelerating use of 40 Gbits/sec and planning for 100-GbE transport in network upgrades as carriers tackle increasing demands on bandwidth capacity," explains Steve Frisken, vice president of wavelength products for Optium Corp. "We understand that next-generation wavelength switching infrastructure must be flexible enough to be able to respond to changing requirements and transmission innovation. Optium's High Resolution WSS platform and advanced features, such as MCP, is designed to address those needs," he says.

"The continued expansion of our ROADM family of products is consistent with Optium's approach to 40-Gbit/sec transmission, where we have developed the industry's broadest line of 40-Gbit/sec 300-pin modules in response to market trends," Frisken continues. "Together, our goal is to provide our customers with a host of next-generation transmission and switching capabilities. We are delivering the functions and flexibility they seek, while developing new avenues of growth for Optium."

Optium's WSS ROADM portfolio--the only ROADM on the market today based on LCoS technology--includes:

• 100-GHz WSS platform: Available in 1 x 4, 1 x 5, 1 x 8, and 1 x 9 configurations. Advanced features include drop and continue and integrated channel monitor.
• High Resolution platform: Available in 1 x 4 and 1 x 8 configurations. Advanced features include drop and continue, mixed channel plan, and integrated channel monitor.

Optium's High Resolution and 100-GHz WSS ROADM platforms will be showcased at the OFC/NFOEC Conference next week in San Diego. Optium representatives will be available at Booth #2839.


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