Issue 6 | Q1 2016 | FTTH Conference Edition

UK’s next gigabit city: Bristol p14

p16 Driving DWDM

p18 Evolution of core networks

p20 Subsea buoyant

p22 Next-gen monetisation

p26 Disruptive technology

p28 Implementing flexible transport

p30 Centralising traffic engineering

Optical Connections: Bringing the World the Latest in Optical Communications News


Cover Story

4 Industry news

Wilkommen, bienvenue, welcome Welcome to the latest issue of Optical Connections, which coincides with the industry’s annual gathering at the FTTH conference and exhibition in Luxembourg. The FTTH Council Europe is welcoming visitors to what it calls “the largest FTTH event in the world”. The three-day expo also offers workshops hands-on demos and networking opportunities such as “Fibration Night” – a party in the Big Beer Company restaurant in Luxembourg City. The Council is confident that attendee numbers will grow again beyond last year’s 3,000 participants from 85 countries. Media, including Optical Connections, analysts and associate partners of the event will also be there to take part in the discussions on the latest FTTH research and trends. Optical Connections is a good starting point for understanding the latest developments in FTTH and wider applications of optical solutions. Besides updates on the latest installations, networking systems and products, we present a broad range of detailed business and technical features, including: the next gigabit city (Bristol), our cover story, which explains CityFibre’s pending deployment of ultra-fast digital optical (p14); several angles on how network technology developers are answering the need for higher rate services from data centre interconnects (p16), through BT’s take on the evolution of core networks (p18), to the proliferation of transatlantic subsea links (p20). On the business side, Ovum explains how the next generation passive optical nets can become more profitable than existing installations (p22), while Lightcounting unravels the mysteries of silicon photonics and answers the question can it be a disruptive technology (p26). We hope you enjoy our up-to-date take on the optical fiber communications business, we look forward to meeting you at FTTH conference, if you’re in Luxembourg, and welcome your contributions to our website and forthcoming issues, which will focus on other big gatherings such as OFC and ECOC, later this year.

14 Next gigabit city Matthew Peach

16 Driving DWDM Roy Rubenstein

18 Evolution of core networks Andrew Lord

20 Subsea buoyant John Williamson

22 Next-gen monetisation Julie Kunstler

26 Disruptive technology Vladimir Kozlov

28 Implementing flexible transport Faisal Dada

30 Centralising traffic engineering Dirk van den Borne

32 FTTH Conference feature

Matthew Peach Contributing Editor, Optical Connections

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Openreach uses Adva’s FSP 150 for new 10Gbit/s EAD service

A dva Optical infrastructure division of BT Group, has deployed its FSP 150 system as the foundation of the new EAD 10G service. This point-to-point 10Gbit/s Ethernet Access Direct service will provide Openreach’s customers with 10 times the bandwidth at little more than twice the price of the current 1Gbit/s product. Openreach is utilising Adva’s technology to meet the rapidly- growing demand for bandwidth from enterprise customers. The new EAD 10G solution saves space, enables flexible deployment and is said to be less expensive than other high-bandwidth products based on optical fibre. The service supports the sector’s increasingly stringent timing requirements with Synchronous Ethernet. It will also enable Openreach to roll out more EAD functionality in the future. Networking has announced that Openreach, the

Kerry Brennan, general manager, Fibre Services, Openreach, commented, “With FSP 150 as the foundation, we’ve created the ideal EAD solution and many of our business and infrastructure customers have already chosen to upgrade. Throughout the project we’ve collaborated closely with Adva’s team. “We know real estate is at a premium in many locations so EAD 10G uses rack space more efficiently. It’s a single-fibre working solution, using only one physical fibre for both, transmit and receive directions, so installation and repair are simple and inexpensive. Customers will also save on power compared with legacy solutions. But the key benefit has to be that EAD 10G delivers 10 times the performance of 1Gbit/s at no more than 2.5 times the price.” The new service is built on the latest 10G variant of the FSP 150 range. With its Etherjack

Adva’s FSP 150 system will be used as the foundation for the OpenReach EAD 10G service

substantial benefits to many UK enterprises. Our FSP 150 ensures the new 10G service is enhanced with EAD Synchronous Ethernet so Openreach’s customers can utilise technologies that require precise frequency synchronisation, giving them access to a host of new business opportunities. With intelligent demarcation and aggregation, its clients will receive even more than high-bandwidth point-to-point connectivity. Enterprises can now tackle their growing bandwidth needs and at the same time drive down cost.”

operations, administration and maintenance tools, it’s a suitable platform for provisioning differentiated Ethernet services at up to 10Gbit/s. The FSP 150 also delivers strict service level assurance for carrier and enterprise applications through its extensive quality of service management. The solution features a variety of service protection capabilities and hardware redundancy options and it comes complete with a resilient temperature-hardened design.” Sarah Mendham, sales director at Adva, said, “EAD 10G is going to bring

High-speed optical modulators adapted for communications and sensing E lectro-optic modulators, which can switch light on and off within just picoseconds, are enabling ever faster Molecules absorb light at well-defined particular colours or optical frequencies. Usually such characteristic frequencies are located in the infrared techniques have been developed, rapid and precise high-resolution sensing is still a challenge. A team of scientists at MPQ comb spectroscopy. Two mutually coherent combs are combined in an interferometer. Unprecedented refresh rates (80 kHz) and tuning speeds (10 nm s-1) at high signal-to-

region of the electromagnetic spectrum. Precisely measuring a set of such absorption dips unambiguously identifies the molecules and quantifies their abundance in the probed environment. absorption spectroscopy is sensitive and nonintrusive, it finds an increasing number of applications, from biomedical diagnostics to atmospheric sensing. In the gas phase, the absorption lines are narrow so that high spectral resolution is needed to distinguish the different lines. Although many powerful spectroscopic Because detection of molecules by optical

telecommunication over optical glass fibres, so that large movies can be streamed more smoothly across oceans into our homes. The same tools have now been harnessed for high-speed and accurate molecular sensing, as reported by an international collaboration around Dr. Nathalie Picqué, Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and Ludwig-Maximilians- Universität Munich, in a letter published in Nature Photonics, 21 December 2015. The collaboration partners are with the Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire Carnot de Bourgogne (France) and the Institut des Sciences Moléculaires d’Orsay, France.

noise ratio are achieved. Such unique combination holds much promise for trace gas sensing, a domain relevant to physics, biology, chemistry, industry or atmospheric sciences. “Furthermore, the frequency-agile frequency comb generator might also become an enabling tool for applications beyond spectroscopy, like for arbitrary waveform generation, radio- frequency photonics, optical coherence tomography or microscopy”, concludes Dr. Ming Yan, a post-doc working at the experiment.

reports a promising new technique of near-infrared spectroscopy. They use modulators and a nonlinear optical fibre to produce two frequency combs, each with more than a thousand evenly spaced infrared spectral lines with a remarkably flat intensity distribution. Line spacing and spectral position can be selected quickly and freely by simply dialing a knob. Such frequency-agile optical combs offer unprecedented freedom when interrogating a molecular spectrum via a powerful technique called multiplexed dual-


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016


Alcatel-Lucent transforms A1 Telekom Austria’s network with ultra-broadband technologies A lcatel-Lucent says it will “transform” the fixed ultra-broadband network of the Telekom innovative G.fast and Vplus ultra-broadband access In addition to the IP core and edge routing technologies already installed in A1 Telekom Austria’s network, Alcatel-Lucent will introduce the compact, are committed to providing our customers the highest broadband speeds and the highest quality of experience. Working with Alcatel-Lucent to transform our network we

technologies, enabling the acceleration of fibre-to-the- building and fibre-to-the- cabinet deployments while delivering substantially faster data speeds to subscribers using its existing copper infrastructure. Additionally the convergence of its IP and optical network, using Alcatel-Lucent’s IP core and routing technologies, will drive simplification and transform operations, allowing A1 to realise new cost efficiencies. Telekom Austria is one of the first providers to deploy and connect live customers using Vplus as part of committed effort to more effectively serve their subscribers needs. VPlus is a DSL technology that allows operators to achieve aggregate speeds of 200 Mbps and more over copper at distances of up to 500 metres and 300 Mbps over distances shorter than 250 metres.

Austria subsidiary A1, using its fixed access, IP routing and optical transport technologies. The deployment will enable A1 Telekom Austria to accelerate the rollout of high-quality, high- bandwidth services and deliver on the national broadband initiative goal of connecting 99 percent of homes at 100 megabits-per-second speeds. Today, already half of Austria’s population has access to data speeds of 100 megabits-per- second, but A1 Telekom Austria aims to increase network capacity and speed to deliver on the national broadband initiative goal, while ensuring all household multimedia needs are met in terms of capacity, access speed and quality.

resilient and high-performance 7750 SR-a to further enhance network capacity and prepare the network for increasing data demands in the future. The company will also renovate A1’s WDM backbone using the 1830 Photonic Service Switch and 400G PSE wavelength technology together with GMPLS support, giving A1 a more agile, higher capacity optical network to deliver new services and meet future capacity demands. The integration of IP and optical transport networks enables operators to maximise operational efficiency, accelerate new services and manage networks end-to-end. Marcus Grausam, Chief Technical Officer of A1 Telekom Austria said, “We

will remain at the forefront of technology in Austria and meet the needs of residents for years to come.” Thomas Arnoldner, Country Senior Officer of Alcatel- Lucent in Austria said, “We are collaborating with leading service providers such as A1 Telekom Austria to develop innovative ultra-broadband technologies that can deliver on the higher speeds and quality performance metrics their customers have come to expect. The A1 deployment of G.fast and Vplus is a prime example of how operators will continue to leverage a mix of next generation DSL technologies to meet their strategic goals in the most effective and efficient way.”

To meet this objective, A1 Telekom Austria will deploy Alcatel-Lucent’s

Fibre optic components for harsh environments to grow 14.6% per year to $2.6bn by 2020 S ales of passive optical components, led by fibre optic cable assemblies (glass average annual growth rate of 14.6 % from $1.3 billion in 2015 to $2.6 billion in 2020. Stephen Montgomery, Director Value ($ Billion)

3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5 1.0 0.5 0.0

optical fibre/GOF plus plastic optical fibre/POF), in harsh environments reached $711 million in 2015, according to market analysis ElectroniCast Consultants. The company’s latest report considers fibre optic components, and supporting devices and parts, designed to operate in harsh environments, beyond the environment of commercial telecom and datacom installations. Transmitter/receiver units held a 43% percent share of total components consumption in 2015. The total use of fibre optic components used in all harsh environment applications is forecast to increase at an

of the fiber optics group at ElectroniCast, commented, “Historically, the market value of harsh environment fibre optic components and devices has been dominated by military/aerospace-qualified components, with a 68% share in back in 2010; however we now forecast that the military/ aerospace application’s market share will decrease over the forecast period (2015-2020). The commercial/industrial fibre optic component consumption, in turn, is dominated by plastic optical fibre link components; however, glass-based optical fibre is finding an increase in opportunity in commercial/ industrial applications.”

2015 1.3

2018 1.9

2020 2.6

The use of components in harsh environments is forecast to grow by 14.6% each year

below -40 to 75 o C; shock and vibration; external pressure extremes; tensile strength of fibre; high EMI/ RFI interference; corrosive and/or solvent surroundings; atomic and other radiation; and rough handling during installation.

Harsh Environment (HE) is defined, by ElectroniCast, as environment beyond the limits normally encountered by commercial telecom, datacom and commercial intra-equipment fibre data links; extremes of: temperature; above or




Researchers confirm ‘realistic’ answer to quantum network puzzle S cientists at the University of York’s (UK) Centre for Quantum Technology have keys in a completely secure fashion. Once these keys are shared by two remote

Optical Signals and from the Microstructured Fibre groups, in collaboration with the Time and Frequency Group at the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington, UK. It explores the development of a robust hollow core fibre suitable for use in demanding applications, such as the distribution of accurate time signals, that are very sensitive to environmental variation, for example to changes in temperature. Dr Radan Slavik, Principal Investigator for the project and leader of the Coherent Optical Signals group, says: “This represents a new and quite exciting research direction for my team. Optical fibre is a parties, they can communicate confidentially by encrypting and decrypting binary messages. The security of the scheme relies on one of the most fundamental laws of quantum physics, the uncertainty principle. Today’s classical communications by email or phone are vulnerable to eavesdroppers but quantum communications based on single particle levels (photons) can easily detect eavesdroppers because they invariably disrupt or perturb a quantum signal. By making quantum measurements, two remote parties can estimate how much information an eavesdropper is stealing from the channel and can apply suitable protocols of privacy amplification to negate the effects of the information loss. However, the problem with QKD protocols based on simple quantum systems, such as single-photon qubits, is their low key-rate, despite their effectiveness in working over long distances. This makes

discovered new evidence to support the development of scalable and secure high rate quantum networks. Earlier research with colleagues at the Technical University of Denmark, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of Toronto, saw the development of a protocol that used continuous- variable quantum systems to achieve key-rates at metropolitan distances at three orders-of- magnitude higher than previously. In a new study published in Nature Photonics, the researchers, led by Dr Stefano Pirandola, of the Department of Computer Science at York, say that a potential alternative using cryogenic devices and standard Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) is unlikely to approach the high rates achieved both theoretically and experimentally using a continuous variable quantum system. Standard protocols of Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) exploit random sequences of quantum bits (qubits) to distribute secret

Using quantum measurements, two remote parties can negate the effects of information loss

with the classical communication infrastructure. Continuous variable systems offer the best and cheapest technology for reaching high rates over metropolitan distances and they can work at room temperature. “On the other hand, the cryogenic devices needed to improve the bit rate on a system using standard qubit-based QKD would require a built-in facility that operated at temperatures close to zero kelvin (minus 273 degrees Celsius). This would be unrealistic from a cost perspective and would still not approach the rate of continuous- variable systems.”

them unsuitable for adaptation for use in metropolitan networks. The option of using continuous- variable quantum systems allows the parallel transmission of many qubits of information while retaining the quantum capability of detecting and defeating eavesdroppers. Dr Pirandola said: “We have compared the state of the art in continuous variable systems (optical modes) with the standard discrete variable systems (qubits). If you want to build a metropolitan network based on quantum cryptography you need a high-rate super-fast connection otherwise you can’t compete

ORC-led fibre research shows promise for ultra-stable applications A team from the Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC), Southampton, UK, has great medium for guiding light, but there are still aspects of its performance that are far from ideal with current fibre with the silica glass at its core. These changes have a negligible impact for most fibre applications such as

telecommunications; however, they can be greatly detrimental in many others such as fibre-based interferometric experiments and devices. The paper shows that hollow core photonic bandgap fibres (HC-PBG) have a significantly smaller sensitivity to temperature variations than traditional solid core fibres. The researchers observed a reduction in thermal sensitivity by a factor of 18, making these fibres the most environmentally insensitive fibre technology available to date.

technology. One of them is its large temperature sensitivity – addressing this issue opens up a whole range of scientifically interesting and industrially relevant applications, and I am currently applying for further funding to research these”. Propagation time through an optical fibre changes with the environmental conditions occurring where the fibre is laid, since changes in the temperature alter both the fibre length (by a tiny but still significant fraction) and the refractive index associated

published its research into the development of an advanced fibre with zero-sensitivity to temperature changes. Published in Nature’s group Scientific Reports journal, the paper entitled; “Ultralow thermal sensitivity of phase and propagation delay in hollow core optical fibres”, reveals key developments in optical signal propagation time and frequency characteristics.

The research has been conducted by a team from the ORC’s Coherent


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016


Adva acquires Overture to create NFV giant and strengthen Cloud access

1,100kmWest African subsea cable system now live A new subsea cable system, that links Lagos in Nigeria to Kribi in Cameroon, has gone live. The 1,100km system completes a key component of Cameroon’s national broadband strategy and it is hoped that the project, a three-way partnership between the Cameroon government, Huawei Marine Networks and MainOne Cable, will boost the current fixed broadband penetration figure in the West African state, which is currently estimated to be just 5%. NEWS IN BRIEF BT wins EU cloud deal BT has won two new contracts with the European Commission to provide both public and private cloud services to EU institutions, agencies and bodies. The ‘framework’ contract has a combined value of more than €24 million and will run for the next four years. The services will be hosted on several data centres within the EU, with the data managed from BT’s Compute Management System (CMS). “This is a milestone in our journey to be the leading global cloud services integrator, and demonstrates how we minimise the complexity, risks and costs for our customers as they move to the cloud.” Said BT Global Services president for Europe, Corrado Sciolla. China Unicom and Telefónica have joined forces to sell big data services across a range of industries in China, using the Spanish operator’s Smart Steps technology. The new company, called Smart Steps Digital Technology Limited, is already operating in parts of Europe and Latin American and will be used to address rising demand in a variety of markets in China, including business consultancy insights, financial risk control, public security, retail analysis and tourism. China Unicom and Telefónica join to launch Big Data

A DVA Optical sum. The acquisition is described as a key step for Adva and further expands its cloud access solution portfolio. The company says it can now offer communication service providers (CSPs) a complete network functions virtualisation architecture that includes programmable hardware, comprehensive software and end-to-end orchestration solutions. The acquisition also significantly increases the company’s North American footprint, including the associated customer base. Networking has acquired Overture for an undisclosed The company said this capability is critical for CSPs as they continue to develop flexible cloud access infrastructures that can rapidly respond to new business demands. Together, Adva and Overture will help to define the virtualised networking A rista Networks for its 7500 high-end switch series. The line card hosts six 100 gigabit CFP2-ACO (analogue coherent optics) pluggable modules and has a reach of up to 5,000km. Several optical equipment makers have announced ‘stackable’ platforms to link data centres in the last year. Arista now offers data centre managers an alternative which avoids having to use such platforms by adding DWDM optics directly onto its switch. Arista says the coherent line card meets various customer needs. Large enterprises has developed a coherent optical transport line card

Adva’s acquisition of Overture brings together two of the industry’s largest manufacturers of Carrier Ethernet access equipment. Not only does this provide CSPs with a wealth of CE engineering knowledge, it also provides them with a comprehensive product set. The acquisition completes the Adva FSP 150 product family with an Ethernet- over-Copper solution, a programmable white-box network interface device, a virtualised NID and an end- to-end orchestration solution. Mike Aquino, CEO, Overture, commented, “What most excites us about this acquisition is how our combined teams will move forward, especially in regards to NFV. What we’re creating here is a team more capable than any other in the industry, focused purely on helping CSPs successfully migrate to NFV-based networks.” up to 96 wavelengths across the fibre’s C-band. The larger 11-rack-unit 7500 switch has eight card slots such that the likely maximum number of coherent cards used in one chassis is four or five – 24 or 30 wavelengths – given that 40 or 100 Gigabit Ethernet client-side interfaces are also needed. Other line card features include 256-bit MACsec encryption. “Enterprises and cloud providers would love to encrypt everything – it is a requirement,” said Hull. “The problem is getting hold of 100-gigabit encryptors.” The MACsec silicon encrypts each packet sent, avoiding having to use a separate encryption platform.

landscape and provide CSPs with a clear migration path to NFV-enabled networks. “Our acquisition of Overture is a defining moment in the cloud access market,” said Brian Protiva, CEO, Adva. “Firstly, we’re creating a number one player in Ethernet access devices. There’s a full account and product synergy between our companies, ensuring a complete solution set for business Ethernet, mobile backhaul and carrier wholesale applications that can be sold into each other’s customer base. “Secondly, we have a shared vision for the future of the cloud services market and the virtualised network. Adding Overture’s NFV-pure-play and orchestration solutions to our hybrid NFV solutions, operators can select what best fits their plans. And we’re creating an incredible team. Overture has great people with a wealth of knowledge.” such as financial companies may want two to four 100 gigabit wavelengths to connect their sites in a metro region. In contrast, cloud providers require a dozen or more wavelengths. “They talk about terabit bandwidth,” said Martin Hull, senior director product management at Arista Networks. As well as the CFP2-ACO modules, the card also features six coherent DSP- ASICs. The DSPs support 100 gigabit dual-polarisation, quadrature phase-shift keying modulation but not the more advanced quadrature amplitude modulation schemes that carry more bits per wavelength. The CFP2-ACO line card has a spectral efficiency that enables

Arista adds coherent optical transport to its 7500 switch

ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016 8


Philips and Cisco working together on the Internet of Things and Power over Ethernet

R oyal Philips and Cisco have announced a global strategic alliance aimed at addressing the Internet of Things (IoT) in the commercial office lighting market. The commercial office lighting market has been a stable but fast growing market for some time; however with Philips, a leading provider of commercial lighting products, and Cisco, a leading provider of commercial networked products, now aligned, it could signal a significant shift in the direction for the industry, say the partners. The companies assert that ‘Lighting in the IoT’ has recently been a major topic of conversation in lighting and communications companies: “Although the concept of smart lighting in commercial applications has been around for decades, control systems are becoming steadily more complex, and the recent evolution of the IoT universe is finally helping companies outside the lighting industry see new possibilities and

take advantage of the increased opportunities a smart lighting system can provide,” said a joint statement, in December. It continued, “Thanks to improved communications to the luminaires, occupancy, movement and daylight sensors – as well as analytics and fault detection systems — facilities managers can now not only increase efficiency, but can also even help improve employee productivity.” Current lighting control systems are typically managed by a dedicated lighting control network, using either a wired system (such as DALI) or a wireless system. However with the falling power requirements of new high-efficiency LED lights, it is now possible to provide both power and communications capability to a luminaire using just one connection. While this power-over-Ethernet (POE) capability increases the complexity of a building’s

Cisco has announced a global strategic alliance with Royal Philips to address the Internet of Things

yet to achieve any significant penetration in the market. With Philips and Cisco now working on providing a competitive POE solution, this technology is poised for growth. However questions still remain as to whether this technology can compete with other technologies already decades ahead of the adoption curve in this fast-growing market.

Ethernet network, it also offers the benefits of high data-rate communications with the luminaires, while also providing enhanced security options and reducing installation costs using infrastructure already installed in the building. In most cases it can even erase the need for a dedicated lighting-control network completely. However POE has only recently become commercially viable in lighting control systems, and so it has

Nokia now holding 80% of outstanding Alcatel-Lucent shares to gain control T he French stock market authority, Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), has published Rajeev Suri, President and CEO of Nokia, said, “We are delighted that the offer has been successful, and that The interim results indicate that just over 20 million outstanding Alcatel-Lucent ordinary shares, 264 million American Depositary

Alcatel-Lucent securities validly tendered into last year’s offer representing more than 50% of the shares on a fully diluted basis. This condition has now been satisfied and the offer is therefore successful. Following the announcement by the AMF of the final results of the offer, the two companies started to progress their integration plans, with the first day as an operationally combined group being January 14, 2016. The AMF will publish the timetable of the reopened offer. Nokia believes it is in the best interests of Alcatel-Lucent shareholders to tender their remaining securities, and invited the remaining Alcatel-Lucent securities holders to tender their shares, ADSs or OCEANE convertible bonds into the reopened offer.

Shares, 206 million OCEANE 2018 convertible bonds, 38 million OCEANE 2019 convertible bonds, and 16 million OCEANE 2020 convertible bonds have been tendered into the French or U.S. offers. As a consequence, by mid January, Nokia would hold 76% of the share capital and at least 76% of the voting rights of Alcatel- Lucent, 89% of the outstanding OCEANEs 2018, 24% of the outstanding OCEANEs 2019, and 15.11% of the outstanding OCEANEs 2020; this equates to Nokia holding 70.5% of the share capital on a fully diluted basis. The completion of the offer was subject to the number of

Alcatel-Lucent’s investors share our confidence in the future of the combined company. We will move quickly to combine the two companies and execute our

the interim results of the initial offer period of Nokia’s public exchange offer for Alcatel- Lucent securities in France and the USA and has declared the offer successful.

integration plans. As of January 14, 2016, Nokia and Alcatel- Lucent will offer a combined end-to-end portfolio of the scope and scale to meet the needs of our global customers. We will have unparalleled R&D and innovation capabilities, which we will use to lead the world in creating next- generation technology and services.”

Rajeev Suri said he was delighted that the offer has been successful


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016


Ciena’s Blue Planet division offers commercial version of ON.Lab ONOS open source software

PPC Broadband acquires m2fx New York based PPC Broadband, a Belden company and leader in cable and wireless broadband connectivity, has acquired UK cable manufacturer, m2fx, for an undisclosed sum. m2fx managing director, Tom Carpenter, has described the transaction as “a merger of two innovative companies which have complementary product lines.” Scott Jackson to lead Infinera Subsea Business Group Infinera recently announced Scott Jackson as vice president, responsible for the company’s Subsea Business Group. “We are delighted to have Scott on board to lead our subsea business group,” said Tom Fallon, Infinera CEO. “His expertise in high-complexity opto-electronic technology and submarine transmission systems will help accelerate Infinera’s development of enhanced solutions for subsea, a vital part of long-haul telecom and content networks.” Scott will focus on enabling subsea network operators to maximise capacity and reach on their subsea cables, reduce operational expense and to deploy services faster than competing systems. Nokia Networks and Telecom Italia search for start-ups Operator Telecom Italia vendor and Nokia Network will start working together to uncover start-ups working on NFV, SDN, and next-generation RAN and SON technologies. Sandro Dionisi, Executive Vice President and Director of Global Advisory Services at Telecom Italia, said: “Collaborating with Nokia Networks on this scouting program will open up the opportunity to introduce new network technologies in strategic areas, faster than before, guaranteeing the support of a leading OEM like Nokia Networks. The initiative will give us access to innovators, mainly but not only in Silicon Valley, speed up and improve technical development, leading to newer and better services for our consumers.” NEWS IN BRIEF

C iena have announced plans to offer a fully-supported commercial version of the Open Networking Operating System (ONOS) open-source software, Blue Planet ONOS, which will extend Ciena’s Blue Planet network orchestration software to enable highly- scalable, flow-based control of data centre networks. ONOS, backed by ON.Lab and several leading service providers and vendors, is a complete open source, carrier- grade, SDN operating system that enables agile service creation and deployment at scale on any hardware, with a scalable control plane that features open APIs to support management, control and service applications across mission-critical networks. Service providers will be able to take advantage of the cumulative software expertise of the open source community, with any enhancements made for customer engagements L umentum Holdings has announced that it has achieved an industry milestone by shipping its one millionth, latest generation, 980nm pump laser. The advanced pump laser platform is being deployed in optical accomplished twice as fast as the previous generation, and is a great accomplishment for Lumentum and the Optical Communications team,” said Doug Alteen, vice president, product line management, Telecom. “Pump lasers, which power optical amplifiers, are an integral part of next generation networks worldwide. “This milestone was

goal is to provide end customers with next-generation, on-demand services and content that leverage a lower cost web-scale infrastructure. Ciena’s Blue Planet ONOS, which will align with the Falcon release of ONOS, is projected to be available in the first calendar quarter of 2016. First released in December 2014, ONOS is catching the attention of the service provider community as it develops rapidly. Guru Parulkar, co- founder and executive director ON.Lab and chairman of the ONOS board, said: “We are excited that Ciena, a recognised leader and advocate for open, programmable networks, will bring this vision to market with Blue Planet ONOS and really appreciate its commitment to contributing bug fixes and enhancements back to open source. In one short year, we have gone from inception to commercial maturity – this is a validation of the power of open source innovation.”

being fed back into the open source community. “As with all Blue Planet software development and support, Ciena embarked on this effort with the LINUX Foundation and ON.Lab as a result of customer demand and engagements. Ciena’s support of ONOS re-affirms our commitment to open source technology and reflects our position as a leader in the global, software- based network transformation movement.” Said Mike Hatfield, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Blue Planet, Ciena and Director on the ONOS Project Board of Directors. The Blue Planet ONOS is initially focused on the Central Office Re-Architected as a Data Centre (CORD) project. CORD provides the framework for service providers to re-architect their traditional central offices into next-generation data centres. This will allow service providers to use SDN and virtualisation technologies to achieve much greater network and service programmability. The ultimate

Lumentum achieves industry milestone

and 15xx nanometer series products, deployed in Raman amplification, offer operating powers up to 600 mW in wavelengths covering the C band and L band. “The 980-nanometer laser platform is ideal for the growing markets that require the highest performance and reliability at lowest cost per milliwatts,” said Jay Skidmore, senior director, R&D, High Power Lasers. “Its progressive optical design, hermetic packaging, power scalability, and lean manufacturing are all easily extended to smaller form factors demanded by our end- user customers.”

optical networks. Lumentum 980nm pump lasers have already accumulated over 12 billion device field hours, demonstrating exceptional performance and reliability.” Derived from a revolutionary semi-cooled (45ºC) platform, the 980nm pump laser significantly reduces power consumption and enables operation in extreme physical environments. Lumentum offers a full portfolio of pump lasers for optical amplification. The 980nm series products support erbium-doped fibre amplifiers operating from 100 mW to 900 mW power levels. The 14xx nanometer




World’s First 50Gb Ethernet Test System S pirent unveiled the world’s first 50Gb/s Higher Speed Ethernet

test solution that will enable its customers to meet the growing needs of the cloud service provider (CSP) space. Spirent has successfully completed the industry’s first 50GbE interoperability test with a global leader in cloud services and infrastructure. The 50GbE Boost test system used in the interoperability test provided full wire-rate packet generation and analysis at 50Gb/s. The 50GbE Boost tests layer 1 to layer 3 quality and highlights error-free performance with different combinations of streams, frame lengths and rates by delivering per-port and per-stream statistics such as latency, frames out of sequence, frame counts and rates, L1 PRBS capability and layer 1 statistics to help debug physical link problems. By demonstrating this ability during the interoperability test, Spirent continues to build on its leadership in high speed Ethernet, showcased in its N etworking systems provider, XKL LLC, has announced it is conducting a series of private demonstrations for its 100GE coherent product line, eVolocity, which is due for public release later this year. The eVolocity products have 480G of capacity per 1RU system and act as a “bandwidth on demand” solution for increased flexibility and scalability. The coherent product line is developed by XKL’s team of engineers and spearheaded

The 50GbE Boost test system provides full y-rate packet generation and analysis at 50Gb/s

50GbE specification cost- effectively increases network bandwidth to allow for cloud service providers to increase the performance and breadth of their services. Because of the work of the 25G/50G consortium, and accelerated by the industry’s work on 100GbE, the basic building blocks for 50 GbE are now in place. With its new 50G Boost program, Spirent is providing a path forward for industry leaders to get their initial 50 Gigabit Ethernet products to market. be costly when deploying a network. The DQM10 upgrade is a cost-effective solution for quickly increasing bandwidth capacity without incurring large capital expenditures at initial deployment. Furthermore, the optional upgrade does not require additional costs when purchasing the base system. The customer decides if the upgrade is needed at a later time, not XKL” Chad added. The DQM10 supports Ethernet (10GbE, 40GbE, and 100GbE), SONET (OC48, OC192) and fibre channel (2, 4, and 8Gb/s) client-side interfaces. Deployment can be achieved in under an hour (in many instances in about 10 minutes) and is designed for network IT staff familiar with a router-like command line interface.

the rapid adoption of 25G and 50G server links will drive the move to 100GbE and beyond for the uplinks from the leaf nodes to the spine nodes.” The 25G/50G Ethernet Consortium specification for Gigabit Ethernet (50GbE) benefits cloud and enterprise data centre environments with high bandwidth server workloads or very low latency requirements. The 25G/50G Ethernet Consortium was formed to enable 25GE and 50GE solutions and promote standardisation efforts. The networking solutions. XKL is leading the way for bandwidth on demand systems within the optical networking space and we anticipate implementation of the eVolocity product line to be a necessity as data traffic demands continue to increase.” The company also recently introduced a DQM10 appliance bandwidth upgrade, which accommodates expansion from 120Gb/s to 240Gb/s, or 360Gb/s in a compact one rack unit appliance. The upgradable feature provides a ‘pay as you grow’ solution, offering data centre, service provider and network engineer flexibility for economical scalability. “Forecasting bandwidth needs is complicated and a simple miscalculation could

upcoming QUINT-speed MX3, FX3, DX3 module series for 100/50/40/25/10GbE. “According to Dell’Oro Group 2015 data, 50Gbps servers will represent more than 30 percent of server shipments in 2019, up from essentially zero percent today,” says Abhitesh Kastuar, General Manager of Spirent’s Cloud and IP business. “With virtualised applications driving server performance it makes sense that access speeds are increasing from 10 to 25 and further to 50Gbps. I believe by the company’s CEO and Founder, Len Bosack. The products use a technique which allows for allocation of bandwidth on an as-needed basis. In addition, the eVolocity products maximise idle capacity of various encapsulation rates for a range of 10GE, 40GE, and 100GE users. “As with all XKL products, our systems are engineered with the future in mind,” says Chad Lamb, Director of Engineering for XKL. “The market is evolving and spectral efficiency is becoming essential for optical

XKL announce private demonstrations of 100GE coherent products

The eVolocity has 480G of capacity per 1RU system


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016


CityFibre to establish next ‘Gigabit city’

CityFibre launches ultra-fast digital network alternative for Bristol in partnership with Triangle Networks. The deal builds upon the recent £90m acquisition of the national UK assets of KCOM. Matthew Peach reports

Bristol Gigabit City will be officially launched at an event in February 2016, at which point a city-wide marketing campaign will begin, to raise awareness of the benefits to businesses from the gigabit speed services on offer and enabling CityFibre to map demand for local network expansion projects. • In early 2015, the city announced the Bristol is Open initiative, an open, scalable and programmable “smart city” digital infrastructure designed to link people and machines with new services, technologies and applications. The city-wide optical network is designed to enable “greater interaction between people and places, with more machine-to-machine communications through the Internet of Things, which ultimately gives citizens the ability to engage more fully with their environment”, the developer’s announcement stated. CityFibre acquires KCOM’s national assets for £90m in December 2015, CityFibre announced the £90 million acquisition of KCOM’s national fibre and duct network assets, following CityFibre’s securing of financing of £180 million. This cash injection was to facilitate the acquisition and to enable the fast-growing alternative service provider to continue to commercialise its national network. Both transactions will serve to increase the number of CityFibre’s metro footprints to 36 cities across the UK and enable the company to target a total of 50 cities by 2020, eventually reaching 20% of the UK market if its hopes are achieved.

as traffic congestion and air pollution; and the trialling of driverless car technology. Paul Anslow, MD at Triangle Networks commented, “We’re excited to be CityFibre’s Gigabit City launch partner on this project. We have been watching demand for ultra-fast services grow exponentially in recent years and this project has the potential to unlock a tide of demand for faster, more resilient and more affordable services. Triangle will be launching gigabit services as standard, which is far faster than those possible on fibre- to-the-cabinet networks that are restricted by the limitations of copper wires. Our approach enables businesses to stop concerning themselves with bandwidth restrictions and make the most of new ways of working to improve their experience and drive the bottom line.” Greg Mesch, CEO of CityFibre added, “We’re delighted to be able to announce Bristol as our next Gigabit City project and to be working with Triangle Networks to ensure its success. Bristol is already a UK leader in digital innovation, but its business community has not yet had the opportunity to take full-advantage. This project provides that opportunity and I could think of nowhere more exciting to begin our latest project. Less than one month after announcing our acquisition of KCOM’s networks, we have begun to commercialise them. As the UK’s largest alternative infrastructure provider, this is the first of many new Gigabit City launches to come on our expanded footprint of 36 cities across the UK.”

Triangle Networks, a locally based internet service provider, which has “hundreds of existing customers in the city”, according to CityFibre, will be the Bristol: Gigabit City launch partner. Triangle said it would be committing a minimum of 100 new customers on the network by the end of 2016. The company will work closely with CityFibre to stimulate business across the city, to connect to the pure fibre network and take advantage of the so-called “Gigabit-speed-as-standard” services. As one of the most digitally advanced cities in the UK, Bristol is well suited to making the most of the new optical communications network infrastructure. The network will complement Bristol’s renowned smart city strategy, which has already made the city a test bed for innovative digital projects. These include Bristol university’s city-sensor network; ‘Bristol is Open’, a laboratory exploring big data solutions to problems such

Matthew Peach C ityFibre, a major independent provider of fibre optic network infrastructure in the UK, announced in mid-January that Bristol is to become the UK’s next “Gigabit City”. This is the first major installation announced by the company following its £90 million acquisition of KCOM’s national fibre networks in December 2015 (KCOM, formerly known as Kingston Communications, is a communications and IT services provider. CityFibre will begin work to commercialise 82km of pure fibre network assets in and around Bristol, creating a modern, alternative digital infrastructure in the city.

CityFibre has already established gigabit networks in several UK cities.


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016


Bristol as UK’s

cityfibre and triangle intend to connect at least 100 new business customers on the gigabit network by the end of 2016

enlarged footprint and strong pipeline of cities demanding better infrastructure, we will continue to grow, offering existing and new partners an ever increasing opportunity to capitalise on a pure fibre future.” CityFibre is also in joint venture with communications and broadcast services providers TalkTalk and Sky. Established in early 2014, this collaboration “aims to prove the viability of gigabit speed fibre networks and services for the home and business.” CityFibre is headquartered in London, and its shares trade on the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange.

assets, which we have already begun to do with our first new service provider relationship on the acquired Bristol network.” The acquisition of KCOM’s national communications infrastructure has extended CityFibre’s UK footprint by more than 300 per cent. The physical infrastructure assets comprise 1,100 km of duct and fibre network in 24 UK cities, as well as 1,100 km of national long-distance networking that connects these cities to major data centres across the UK and to internet peering points in London. Mesch concluded, “With our

alternative investment for well over a decade. By combining the unique and highly attractive KCOM network assets with our own, we are well-positioned to tap into future growth in the rapidly evolving UK fibre market. “With a significant presence in 36 cities, 21 of which are completely new markets for us, we are now established as a credible alternative to BT Openreach, and the largest independent provider of wholesale fibre infrastructure on a national basis. Moreover, the £180 million funding package we have closed equips us to push hard on commercialising the acquired

The new financing comprises £80 million of new equity and £100 million in debt facilities. Both the financing and acquisition transactions were completed in mid-January, making CityFibre the UK’s largest wholesale infrastructure provider after BT and the first challenger to the national incumbent, nearly 10 years to the day since the formation of BT Openreach. On the completion of the financing and KCOM acquisition, Greg Mesch, Chief Executive of CityFibre, commented in mid-January: “This is a momentous day for UK broadband infrastructure, which has seen no meaningful




Internet content providers to take control of their

The emergence of a new class of optical transport platform to address the needs of Internet content providers is a significant development. It marks the first time in recent history that custom optical equipment, known as data centre interconnect, has been developed for an end- customer other than a telco.

Such a level of monitoring, decision-making and network adaptation is not something that telcos do or can match, given their legacy operations support systems. “The cable operators and the telcos are really paying attention to what they are doing,” says Esmacher. Different strategies For the telcos and the web- scale players, reducing cost- per-bit remains a critical goal. “More capacity is nice but a lot of this is driven by market forces,” says Jörg-Peter Elbers, vice president of advanced technology at Adva Optical Networking. “Even if you have a technology that is 100 times better, nobody will use it unless the technology is at an acceptable price point.” Vendors are adopting several approaches to improve optical-transport system performance and reduce its cost. Equipment vendors are embracing more flexible line-side transponders that support multiple modulation schemes. “The gain in spectral efficiency through modulation doesn’t come for free,” says Elbers. Higher-order modulation increases capacity and spectral efficiency but at the expense of a loss in system performance which can be quite dramatic, he says. Current 100-gigabit wavelengths with coherent detection use polarisation-

rather than the telcos that are now driving DWDM. But what is not in question is that their requirements are giving DWDM development a fresh impetus. Web-scale requirements The web-scale players’ transport needs are varied, depending on where their data centres are located and the applications they are running. Certain players may have relatively modest capacity needs that can be met with up to a terabit of capacity. Others want to connect their distributed data-centre sites in a metro to appear as one large virtual net. For switches in one data centre to talk to those in another yet appear adjacent requires significant interconnect capacity – in the tens of terabits. Moreover, web-scale players are no longer just metro players; they now operate and even own terrestrial and submarine long-haul networks. “Their requirements are identical to a global telco,” says Esmacher. Cisco’s NCS 2015 chassis for the telcos has 15 card slots, each supporting 200 Gbit/s. The total 3 terabit of capacity occupy 12 rack units (RU). In contrast, Cisco’s first data centre interconnect product – the NCS 1002 – crams 2 terabit line-side capacity in 2RU. Data centre interconnect platforms are stackable, similar to servers. This allows data centre managers to scale line- side capacity with traffic growth.

The systems vendors use different rack form-factors for their data centre interconnect products. Adva Optical Network’s CloudConnect uses a thin 0.5RU card that supports up to 400-gigabit line-side optics. Ciena Waveserver and Coriant’s Groove G30 use a 1RU card offering 400 gigabit and 1.6 gigabit, respectively. Meanwhile, Infinera’s Cloud Xpress uses its 500 gigabit PIC in a 2RU box. System vendors use several performance metrics for their platforms. One is the line-side capacity on the equivalent of a 1RU card. The second is the capacity of a fully stacked platform. This is less meaningful given how platforms’ cards are now so dense that a fully stacked platform can fill several fibres. Data centres also have a limit as to how much power can be supplied to individual equipment. Which leads to a third, important platform metric: the gigabit/W consumed. Nor is it just hardware that is key. The web-scale players use telemetry, streaming measurement data collected from the network. The equipment data is fed into a large database used by the data centre’s management software to allow a web-scale player to optimally match its services and applications to the network. Data centre interconnect platforms must support such telemetry and provide the open interfaces needed by the management systems.


I nternet content providers are experiencing significant traffic growth, estimated at between 80 and 100 percent annually. The new DWDM platform is designed to maximise the volume of traffic sent between large- scale data centres in the smallest possible footprint. These web-scale players now have an equal seat at the table with the traditional telcos, says Russ Esmacher, director, packet optical sales, Americas at Cisco: “They are driving a tremendous amount of innovation in the market.” “They are so focused on wringing the capacity out of components and systems, and are pushing the envelope more than the other players,” agrees Jay Gill, Infinera’s principal manager, cloud and SDN marketing. Ciena says it experienced a 70 percent increase in 100-gigabit and 200-gigabit DWDM deployments in 2015 compared to 2014. The web- scale players account for 80 percent of these 200-gigabit shipments, says Helen Xenos, Ciena’s director, product and technology marketing. The system vendors are cautious about the claim that it is the web-scale players


ISSUE 6 | Q1 2016

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