Sunday, March 5, 2006

BT Finalizes 21CN Contracts

BT has concluded negotiations and signed contracts with the remaining four preferred suppliers for its 21st Century Network (21CN). Contracts have been signed with Alcatel, Cisco, Ericsson and Fujitsu. This follows the announcement on 23rd December 2005 that contracts have been signed with Ciena, Huawei, Lucent and Siemens.

Alcatel will provide its 7750 Service Router and 5620 Service Aware Manager. The Metro node is the point at which traffic is intelligently managed, directed and delivered over the MPLS core. "Service and subscriber aware" switching is provided by these Alcatel solutions whereby traffic is assigned Quality of Service priorities based on the service to which it relates. The Alcatel 7510 Media Gateway and the 1300 Convergent Network Management Centre will also be used to provide the essential connectivity needed as traffic is migrated from the PSTN to the new IP network.

Cisco Carrier Ethernet technologies will provide Ethernet aggregation at the BT 21CN metro nodes. Cisco MGX media gateways at the BT 21CN metro nodes will support PSTN traffic. The Cisco CRS-1 Carrier Routing System will be deployed in the high-capacity backbone network. Cisco also announced plans to open a $10 million IP NGN test facility in the United Kingdom to provide a carrier-scale environment for architecture verification and validation, and assistance in developing and testing 21CN solutions.

Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe will be a key preferred supplier in the access domain, providing Multi Service Access Node (MSAN) solutions to link BT's existing access network to the 21CN core IP-based network. Fujitsu's MSAN solution is based around its GeoStream Access Gateway, which provides a common platform for the support of fiber and copper terminations across a wide range of existing and next-generation services to end-users. A key element of GeoStream Access Gateway involves the ability to deliver H.248 voice interoperability as a platform to provide broadband alongside voice services on a common platform. The multi-service capability includes support for ADSL, ADSL2, ADSL2+, SDSL, VDSL, Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, PON, GPON, WiMAX, SDH and PDH -- all from the same platform.

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