Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Polaris Cites Gains for its Next-Generation DCS Solution

Polaris Networks, a start-up based in San Jose, California, announced a three year agreement to supply its Optical Multiservice Multiband Switch for deployment in McLeodUSA's metro networks. McLeodUSA plans to use the platform for wideband technology to support growth in its 25-state footprint by integrating its SONET transport network directly with cross-connect platforms in a cap-and-grow deployment. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Polaris also announced general availability of its Optical Multiservice Multiband Switch (OMX) -- a next generation DCS switch designed to combine the functions of a wideband, broadband and super-broadband digital crossconnect system (DCS) with SONET add/drop-based transport. It can be used to consolidates SONET rings and switch/groom multiband traffic. The platform provides 240Gbps to 2 Tbps of wideband (DS1/VT1.5), broadband (DS3/STS1), and superbroadband (STS-Nc) switching capability with DCS OAM&P functions. It also integrates SONET ADM functions and layer 2 protocol adaptation (MPLS, PPP, POS, GFP/X.86, FR, ATM) and packet/flow aggregation functions into a single, consolidated system.

In a multiservice transport network, the Polaris platform could also be used for Layer 2 protocol adaptation and packet aggregation for Ethernet over SONET (GFP, VCAT/LCAS).

Polaris uses a programmable hybrid switch fabric based on its own ASICs. Polaris is also developing a GMPLS-based control plane to automate end-to-end provisioning of services.

  • In April 2004, Polaris Networks raised $10 million in new funding. Investors include Redpoint Ventures, Venrock Associates, Advanced Technology Ventures, SToRM Ventures and strategic private investors.

  • Polaris Networks is headed by Surya Panditi, who previously served as CEO of Avici Systems and of Convergent Networks.

  • Polaris' technical team is led by Ray Kao, previously a founder of TransMedia Communications (acquired by Cisco in 1999 for its voice-data signaling technology). Prior to TransMedia, Kao was the chief architect of Stratacom/Cisco's multiservice switching products.


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