Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Alcatel-Lucent Debuts Terabit-class Optical Core Transport Switch

Alcatel-Lucent unveiled a terabit-class, optical core switching platform for next-generation Optical Transport Networks (OTN). The Alcatel-Lucent 1870 Transport Tera Switch (TTS) is designed to give operators the flexibility to transport IP traffic, including video, at the most cost-effective layer of the network while increasing profitability by freeing up bandwidth for higher value services.

The Alcatel-Lucent 1870 TTS leverages a proprietary, universal switching chip that offers one terabit (1 Tbps) of capacity. The chip, which was developed in-house, packs more than 20 million gates and is fully non-blocking at any supported rate. The chip delivers an efficiency rating of 0.04 Watts/Gbps.

The Alcatel-Lucent 1870 TTS supports multiple transport networking options, including Carrier Ethernet and SONET/SDH, and offers Generalized Multiprotocol Label Switching/Automatically Switched Optical Network (GMPLS/ASON) control plane intelligence for added-value applications such as advanced restoration, resource virtualization and cross-layer automation. The platform scales as high as four Tbps in its first release and is "hardware ready" to support 8 Tbps. It offers 120 Gbps full duplex per traffic slot and supports any mix of Ethernet/OTN/SONET/SDH/SAN ports. Alcatel-Lucent is initially providing 40G/10G/2.5G/1G and low-rate ports with tunable XFPs. New 100 Gbps interfaces are also planned.

Additionally, the 1870 TTS provides multiple bandwidth management options, including an innovative variable rate "virtual container" technology. Called optical data unit flex (ODUFlex), this technology allows universal traffic grooming between optical transport equipment and IP routers in a manner that efficiently addresses incremental bandwidth growth, in steps as granular as 1 Gbps.

"Network costs are growing proportionally with traffic, but revenue and profit are not. To address this disconnect, operators need to ensure that their IP core can manage ever increasing volumes of traffic at the lowest possible cost," said Romano Valussi, President of Alcatel-Lucent's Optics activities. "At the same time, they need to extract more value from their core network. The new Transport Tera Switch is the most intelligent optical platform on the market today which can create a host of opportunities to deliver new services, while driving down transport costs."

Alcatel-Lucent confirmed that the platform is currently in trials with Tier-1 service providers.

The Alcatel-Lucent 1870 TTS is a key element of the company's recently introduced Converged Backbone Transformation (CBT) solution for next generation IP optical core networks.
http://www.alcatel-lucent.comIn September 2009, Alcatel-Lucent outlined its Converged Backbone Transformation solution aimed at relieving the strain on service providers' core networks by optimizing the routing of IP packets over optical transport.

Alcatel-Lucent said its new Converged Backbone Transformation solution solves this problem by more tightly integrating IP and optical transport resources. This integration reduces the number of required network elements, improves efficiencies in power and rack space, simplifies network provisioning and fault management, and minimizes latency. Alcatel-Lucent accomplishes this by means of an intelligent control plane between the optical and IP layers, leveraging ASON and GMPLS technologies. The goal is to handle traffic at lowest layer via flexible grooming & IP offloading options. This enables IP packets to stay at the photonic layer for as long as possible throughout the transit to their destination, rather than being processed by intermediate core routers. Management Plane Integration across IP & optical domains would enable seamless network visibility and provisioning.

A second goal of the Converged Backbone Transformation is to improve the efficiency of the optical network's resources through better grooming -- or "packing" -- of IP ports into wavelengths. Alcatel-Lucent is offering a range of traffic grooming options, including lambda (or wavelength)-level, port-level and sub-port-level grooming of IP traffic.

Alcatel-Lucent estimates its Converged Backbone Transformation would result in CapEx cost savings of at least 30%, in addition to savings in power, space and operational complexity. The Converged Backbone Transformation solution is a key component of Alcatel-Lucent's High Leverage Network strategy.