Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Infinera and Seaborn set spectral efficiency record for ULH subsea cable

Infinera and Seaborn Networks (Seaborn) reported a new record for highest spectral efficiency on an ultra-long-haul subsea cable.

Seaborn owns and operates the new Seabras-1 submarine cable, which spans 10,600-km and offers a direct connection between São Paulo, Brazil and New York City. Seabras-1, which recently entered commercial service, is the longest uncompensated cable connecting North and South America. It has multiple branching units and is designed to provide additional route diversity to Virginia Beach, Miami, St. Croix, Fortaleza, Rio de Janeiro, southern Brazil and Cape Town. The system is powered by Infinera’s new XTS-3300 meshponders.

To achieve the new benchmark for highest spectral efficiency, Infinera and Seaborn conducted an 8QAM trial at 4.5 bits per second per hertz on the Seabras-1 cable. Infinera and Seaborn validated the performance of the Infinera XTS-3300 meshponder featuring the Advanced Coherent Toolkit (ACT) on the Seabras-1 submarine cable, helping Seaborn to maximize the return on its cable assets.

The XTS-3300 is based on Infinera’s Infinite Capacity Engine 4 (ICE4) and is optimized for long-haul subsea applications. Infinera said its ICE4 technology incorporates unique technologies to boost capacity-reach performance including digitally synthesized Nyquist subcarriers, enhanced pre- and post-dispersion compensation, improved non-linear tolerance and SD-FEC gain sharing which is only possible with dual-channel DSPs. These capabilities collectively support up to 18.2 terabits per second per fiber for distances over 10,000 km, powered by ICE4’s leadership in spectral efficiency.

“This is an impressive achievement that far surpasses what we expected. Infinera has distinguished itself as an industry leader in delivering outstanding subsea optical performance,” said Larry W. Schwartz, Chairman and CEO, Seaborn Networks. “The Infinera XTS-3300 meshponders deliver industry-leading performance over Seabras-1 and validate Infinera’s technology leadership in subsea transmission. The capacity upgrade maximizes our return on investment and further underscores the uniqueness of Seaborn’s capacity on Seabras-1.”

“We are delighted with the performance of the XTS-3300 and the Infinite Capacity Engine 4 for subsea applications. The XTS-3300 delivers industry leading capacity-reach performance for our subsea customers where spectral efficiency is paramount and bandwidth demand is growing at more than 45 percent per year,” said Dave Welch, President and Co-Founder, Infinera.

EFFECT Photonics and Skylane Optics to supply narrow-tunable optical transceivers

Skylane Optics, a privately-held company that supplies a wide range of optical transceivers and other photonic, reached an agreement with EFFECT Photonics to supply narrow-tunable optical transceivers to telecom operators in Europe, North and South America.

EFFECT Photonics, which is based in Eindhoven, Netherlands, develops highly integrated optical products based on InP (Indium Phosphide). The company has recently begun sampling of a narrow-band tunable DWDM optical transceiver designed for next-gen mobile networks. The new product leverages EFFECT's optical System-on-Chip technology with advanced photonic integration and low-cost packaging. The design combines many optical functions within its PIC platform including, tunable lasers, MZI modulators, waveguides, SOAs, photodetectors, along with integrated wavelength lockers.

Skylane Optics said the costs associated with using EFFECT Photonics narrow-band tunable optical transceiver enables a reduction in sparing and provisioning costs by over 90%.

Skylane Optics is based in Belgium.

Aruba builds analytics-driven security framework for multivendor networks

Aruba, the wireless networking division of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, is launching an analytics-driven attack detection and response framework to bolster enterprise security from the edge, to the core, to the cloud for multivendor networks.

Aruba 360 Secure Fabric is a security framework that builds on User and Entity Behavioral Analytics (UEBA) to detect and respond to advanced cyberattacks from pre-authorization to post-authorization across multivendor networks, not just its own wireless LAN gear. Aruba already offers an IntroSpect UEBA product line that leverages machine learning security to detect anomalous user and traffic patterns across multiple data sources. Aruba Introspect can ingest common data sources including Microsoft Active Directory or other LDAP authentication records and identity information, and firewall logs from sources such as Checkpoint, Palo Alto Networks, or Aruba monitoring (AMON) logs from Aruba infrastructure.

Key components of the Aruba 360 Secure Fabric include:

  • Aruba IntroSpect UEBA solution : A new network-agnostic family of continuous monitoring and advanced attack detection software. Includes a new entry-level edition and uses machine learning to detect changes in user and device behavior that can indicate attacks that have evaded traditional security defenses. Machine-learning algorithms generate a Risk Score based on the severity of an attack to speed up incident investigations for security teams.
  • Aruba ClearPass : A network access control (NAC) and policy management security solution that can profile BYOD and IoT users and devices, enabling automated attack response, is now integrated with Aruba IntroSpect. ClearPass can also be deployed on any vendor’s network.
  • Aruba Secure Core : Essential security capabilities embedded in the foundation across all of Aruba’s Wi-Fi access points, wireless controllers, and switches, including the recently introduced Aruba 8400 campus core and aggregation switch.

Aruba said its new framework delivers betters and complementary attack detection with leading third-party security solutions. An emphasis is places on rapid response for breach investigations based on forensic traffic analysis.

Acacia develops 2 x 600 Gbps Coherent Module

Acacia Communications introduced a coherent optical module that pairs two wavelengths at up to 600 Gbps capacity each to support transmission speeds of up to 1.2 Tbps. The module could be used in systems for DCI, metro, long-haul and submarine networks.

Acacia's AC1200 Coherent Module is based on its Pico digital signal processor (DSP) ASIC. The module's footprint which is 40% less than the size of a 5” x 7” module supporting 400 Gbps today.  Acacia will support security encryption with this new product.

Key features of Acacia’s AC1200 modules:

  • Tunable Baud Rate – enables continuous baud rate adjustment for optimal utilization of the available spectrum
  • Patented Fractional QAM Modulation – provides users with the ability to select very fine resolution of QAM constellations for optimal capacity
  • Enhanced Turbo Product Code SD-FEC – offers ultra-high net coding gain (NCG) and enables maximum reach, while maintaining low power dissipation.

Acacia anticipates sampling in the first half of 2018.

Google acquires HTC's hardware team

Google will hire a team of hardware engineers from HTC, the Taiwan-based mobile and consumer electronics firm.

The HTC team has been working closely with Google on its Pixel smartphone line.

The deal, reportedly worth US$1.1 billion, also includes a non-exclusive license for HTC intellectual property.

Google is planning to unveil its latest line of hardware products on October 4th.

  • In 2012, Google acquired Motorola ia deal valued at US$12.5 billion. The acquisition included an extensive intellectual property portfolio. Google later sold the Motorola handset business to Lenovo for $2.9 billion.

Arista's Any Cloud aims for universal cloud consistency

Arista Networks unveiled its strategy for extending its Extensible Operating System (EOS) across private cloud datacenters and public cloud providers.

The Arista Any Cloud software platform will support Amazon Web Services (AWS), the Microsoft Azure cloud platform, Microsoft Azure Stack, Google Cloud Platform and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.  Arista will also be providing integration with the Equinix Cloud Exchange, which provides direct high-performance connections to 70+ cloud providers.

Key elements of the Arista Any Cloud solution include the Arista vEOS Router for hypervisors (KVM and VMware ESX) and for cloud platforms (AWS and Azure), and the Arista Cloud Tracer as a CloudVision-based application. Arista’s new Cloud Tracer assures that visibility and availability metrics are tracked consistently across the entire hybrid cloud environment, including public cloud direct connections, remote datacenter connections and cloud exchange points.

Arista said its Any Cloud solution will provide its enterprise customers with a common Universal Cloud Network experience.

“Arista’s Any Cloud platform transcends public and private clouds, radically changing the on-premises enterprise datacenter. We are helping customers realize their hybrid-cloud transformation by extending Arista EOS and CloudVision across network boundaries,” said Jayshree Ullal, President and CEO for Arista Networks.

NEC Completes "SKR1M" 100Gbps Subsea Cable in Malaysia

NEC completed the construction of the Sistem Kabel Rakyat 1Malaysia (SKR1M) 100 Gbps submarine cable linking Peninsular Malaysia with Sabah and Sarawak.

The project is a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) collaboration between Telekom Malaysia and the Malaysian Government through the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).

The new submarine cable system spans over 3,800 kilometers and has six landings, namely, Kuantan, Mersing, Kuching, Bintulu, Miri, and Kota Kinabalu.

NEC said the system is upgradable to 12.8 Tbps of capacity.

NTT Group seeks growth through diversification – part 2

Preamble – The first part of this article presented an organizational look at the NTT Group, which consists of five main groups and an astounding number of subsidiary companies: 944 at last count with interests as diverse as IT outsourcing, mobile apps, real estate, data centers, finance, construction, and even electrical power. We also presented a number of operational showing that NTT is indeed growing again at a 3.4% annual rate, and that in its home market of Japan, NTT continues to hold the largest share of the mobile and fixed line business.

The Global Cloud Strategy

NTT may be the quintessential Japanese conglomerate; however, the company now sees faster growth overseas than in Japan. Recently, thanks to several key acquisitions as well as organic growth, overseas sales and operating income are on a growth spurt. 

                                    Sales                                        Operating income
FY2015/3                    US$15.0B                               US$0.67b
FY2016/3                    US $15.6B                              US$0.69B
FY2017/3                    US $16.9B                              US$0.80B
FY2018/3 (forecast)    US$19.6B                               US$1.5B

The growing sales are based on what NTT calls its Global Cloud Business Promotion System which is aiming for the “full stack” or services, although delivered through sister companies rather than under a unified brand. In that sense, it differs from the pure cloud providers, such as Amazon Web Services, Alibaba or IBM. Of course, NTT also possess the physical network assets, such as dedicated fiber pairs on subsea cables, that few others can rival.

Here is the strategic picture

The Data Centre Layer

Inside the group, the data center layer should be the domain of NTT Communications, although in some overseas markets, other subsidiaries take over this function. Here are some examples.

European data centres: In August, NTT Communications, acting through its European subsidiary e-shelter, inaugurated a new data center in Bonn, Germany. The two-story Rhein-Ruhr 1 offers 2,700 square meters (sqm) of server space, equivalent to 1,100 racks. The facility conforms delivers data-center services based on more than 300 globally unified standards that NTT Com’s Nexcenter facilities have implemented for equipment and operations. In Europe, NTT Com delivers data center services in Austria, France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and the UK (see Appendix 1). NTT Com expands its data center business to the Rhein-Ruhr region, one of the most expected data-center markets in Germany mainly serving the customers from the public sector. In May, NTT Comm inaugurated its Germany Munich 2 data centre (Munich 2) located in Unterschleißheim, a suburb of Munich 16 km from the city centre, with the facility managed by e-shelter, a NTT Com company and data centre services provider in Europe. The two-story Munich 2 data centre initially offers 2,800 sq metres of server space, equivalent to 1,100 racks, with plans to expand the facility to 5,600 sq metres. The facility is operating under NTT Com's Nexcenter brand.

North American data centres: In 2009, NTT Communications acquired an 80% stake in RagingWire, a wholesale data centre operator, for US$350 million. At the time, Raging operated 650,000 square feet of data center space at its campuses in Sacramento, California, and Ashburn, Virginia. Since then, RagingWire has continued to build at a frenetic pace and is now one of the largest data centre shops in the crucial Ashburn market. Late in 2016, Ragingwire announced plans for its third data center in Ashburn’s “Data Center Alley” measuring 245,000 square feet of space and 16 megawatts of power, The VA3 Data Center joins RagingWire’s VA1 and VA2 data centers, which also are in Ashburn. The combination of VA1, VA2 and VA3 creates a data center footprint of over a half million square feet of space and 44.4 megawatts of power. RagingWire also has massive data centers in Dallas, Texas and Sacramento, California.

India: In July, NTT Communications announced the launch of international data network services in India through its affiliate NTT Communications India Network Services (NTTCINS). NTT Com stated that the acquisition of its licence in India follows the launch of construction of two new Indian data centres in Mumbai and Bangalore, through subsidiary Netmagic, a provider of managed hosting and cloud services in India. NTT Com said it plans to invest $160 million in building the two data centres, which are scheduled to become operational by April 2018. The new data centres will add nearly 500,000 sq feet of gross floor space at full build out, increasing NTT Com's total gross footprint in India to 1,100,000 sq feet. The new data centres in Mumbai and Bangalore will accommodate 2,750 racks with 22 MW of power and 1,500 racks with 15 MW of power, respectively.

The Managed ICT Layer

At the managed ICT layer, the NTT Group has several overlapping interests at play.
First, NTT Communications is the wide-area networking division within the group, offering a very wide range of services from legacy corporate voice communications, to data networking, and cloud computing. It has more than 380 subsidiaries of its own (including RagingWire and e-shelter, as mentioned above) and more than 43,800 employees. We can safely say NTT Comm does business pretty much everywhere in the world. The revenue picture for NTT Comm follows.

Global SD-WAN Launch

In June, a NTT SD-WAN Service Portfolio was officially launched, offering coverage spanning over 190 countries, NTT Comm also announced the deployment of a fully software defined network that provides the framework for the delivery of a suite of overlay SD-WAN services for global and regional enterprises.

The NTT SD-WAN platform is based on a new architecture that is locally distributed at sites worldwide via over 75 local cloud centres (LCCs) that are optimised for network, mobility and security. In addition, NTT SD-WAN real-time streaming network analytics offers CIOs and IT staff insight into application performance, network security and the end-user experience. The platform can also support the delivery of services from CPE located at branch offices.

Key features of NTT SD-WAN platform include:
  • Real-time streaming network analytics based on NTT Com's application visibility reporting and analytics tool to help enterprise customers manage network workload and performance.
  • Enterprise connectivity flexibility, with support for connectivity options such as local ISP, Internet, broadband, wireless, MPLS and LTE, plus cloud connectivity to major SaaS and cloud service providers.
  • CPE flexibility, with the ability to select NTT provided or customer provided SD-WAN devices at branch offices.
  • Optimised local ISP selection and routing, offering optimised connectivity to 1,000+ local network providers that connect customer locations in over 190 countries.
  • Enhanced QoS, enabling the application and enforcement of QoS policies.
  • Secure web gateways and application acceleration, with security via NTT Com's secure web gateways at LCCs and application acceleration via its LCCs.

 The Virtela line

The newly-launched SD-WAN service is not the first time the company has reached beyond MPLS or other VPN technologies to build a virtual network service. In 2014, NTT Communications acquired Virtela Technology Services (Virtela) of Denver, Colorado, a global managed and cloud network services provider serving over 500 multinational companies. Virtela idea was to integrated 1,000+ local and regional network providers, enabling the customer to build a virtual overlay network from multi-carrier MPLS, Ethernet, DSL, 3G/4G/LTE and other IP links, while benefitting from a single SLA and management portal. Virtela operates global operations and delivery centers in the U.S., India and the Philippines.  

USAF awards $1 billion Cloud Hosted Enterprise Services contract

In what is described as the largest-ever federal cloud-based unified communications and collaboration contract, the U.S. Air Force awarded a five-year, $1 billion contract to Dell EMC, General Dynamics and Microsoft.

Under the contract, the three partners will implement a Cloud Hosted Enterprise Services (CHES) program aimed at improving efficiency and agility, encouraging innovation, and generating cost savings across the Air Force’s information technology enterprise.

Dell EMC, General Dynamics and Microsoft have also been instrumental in the Air Force's IT transformation initiative, which was launched in 2015 and included deployment of Microsoft Office 365 including email, productivity tools and communications. Over 140,000 users have been migrated to this cloud platform over the past two years. CHES is the follow-on to that program.

The task order was awarded by the General Services Administration’s Federal Acquisition Service in Denver.

Inphi announces 100G DWDM QSFP28 modules for DCI

Inphi introduced its "COLORZ-Lite" 100G DWDM QSFP28 form factor modules for campus and data center interconnects spanning up to 20km. The company says its COLORZ-Lite hot-swappable devices can plug into any QSFP28 100G Ethernet port of any standard switch or router. COLORZ-Lite can support up to 40 DWDM channels on a single fiber.

COLORZ-Lite DWDM Key Features:

  • QSFP28 MSA form factor supporting 100G Ethernet
  • Enables 4 Tb/s capacity over a single fiber
  • 4.5 W power dissipation
  • ITU wavelength grid compatible
  • DSP based PAM4 modulation
  • Optimized cost performace for up to 20km

Inphi first announced its COLORZ 100G PAM4 platform solution for 80 km DWDM DCI last year.

Inphi expands PAM4 DSP portfolio for 50G-400G

Inphi Corp. has expanded its 16nm Polaris PAM4 DSP portfolio for next generation 50G-400G cloud deployments. The new Polaris PAM4 DSP PHY ICs, which are now sampling, provide a full bi-directional interface with host ASICs that have 28GBaud PAM4 and NRZ electrical interfaces while bridging to 28GBaud PAM4 optics.

Inphi's 16nm CMOS PAM4 platform is based on four generations of DSP engines. The new devices will support both integrated and non-integrated driver capabilities spanning short reach optical applications, and longer distances of fiber enabled by the use of an external driver.

Polaris 16nm PAM4 DSP PHY with Integrated Driver features:

  • InphiNity DSP Engine with a unique mixed-mode DSP architecture for high-performance, low power applications needing adaptability and configurability
  • Numerous self-test and loopback modes that allow diagnostic monitoring of channel and system parameters
  • Eye-scan, samplers and monitors on all receiver interfaces for link margin and stress testing along with GUI and API routines for data and error analytics
  • Low power 16nm CMOS

II-VI debuts Optical Line Subsystem for DCI

Pittsburgh-based II-VI Incorporated introduced an Optical Line Subsystem platform for datacenter interconnects (DCI).

The new subsystem is optimized for direct-detect DWDM transceivers, including the new COLORZ-Lite 100G PAM4 based on the COLORZ silicon photonics platform from Inphi Corp.

II-VI’s Optical Line Subsystem multiplexes, amplifies and demultiplexes multiple wavelengths of COLORZ-Lite data streams to achieve a combined transmission rate of up to 4 Tb/s over a 20 km reach in a compact one rack
unit (1RU) form factor.

“The COLORZ-Lite direct-detect DWDM technology enables cloud service providers to alleviate fiber exhaust resulting from the high usage of 100G grey optics,” commented Dr. Loi Nguyen, founder, SVP, Optical Interconnect, Inphi. “The key to achieving this is the II-VI Optical Line Subsystem technology, which enables the transport of direct-detect data streams at significantly lower cost points than any other competing solution.”

II-VI demonstrated its Optical Line Subsystem and the COLORZ-Lite 100G PAM4 platforms at ECOC 2017.

EXFO intros 400G test solution

EXFO released its 400G testing solution for telecom network equipment manufacturers (NEMs), carrier labs, and data centers.

The EXFO FTBx-88400NGE Power Blazer provides advanced testing for the full suite of new 400G technologies, including support for FlexE (Flex Ethernet), 400G Ethernet and high-speed transceiver validation. EXFO will offer both a rackmount and a portable version.

Coriant wins Australia's nbn "We Deliver" award

nbn, the company building and operating Australia’s national broadband network, selected Coriant for the ‘We Deliver’ award at its recent nbn Supplier Summit held in Sydney.

The Coriant hiT 7300 Multi-Haul Transport Platform powers the nbn optical transport backbone, which now spans over 60,000 kilometers.

The ‘We Deliver’ award recognizes Coriant’s quality solutions and service excellence consistency since nbn’s inception.