ViewsLetter(SM) on Provisioning

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 Flanagan Consulting                 Network Analysts and Consultants
                                         "We Have the Experience"
ViewsLetter on Provisioning                24 Feb 2003        #17


By V. Kaminsky, PracTel, Inc.
Associate, Flanagan Consulting

(The first half of this article appeared last time.  To get a free PDF of
the whole report, see the end of this message.)

   The Tellabs 6500 Transport Switch is a broadband transport platform
that performs bandwidth grooming, add-drop multiplexing and
cross-connections.  Distinguishing feature of this device is its new
MetroVantage solution that extends these capabilities to remote locations
via metro aggregation/backhaul and virtual cross-connections.
MetroVantage shelves can be remoted as far as 25 km from the 6500
platform.  It also scales from  20 Gbit/s to 1.2 Tbit/s (in a future
release), and is expandable from the smallest system of 384 STS-1s to
49,152 STS-1s maixmum.  It does not allow 10 Gbit/s signal processing at
the present time.  Tellabs offers quick provisioning of broadband
circuits.  SDH signals will be supported by a different platform.  Tellabs
stopped development of its OOO platform, the 6700.

   This company's product, the SpectralWave Universal Node Broad Band
Manager, offers various transport services of SDH/SONET, PDH, and Gigabit
Ethernet in flexible network topologies such as linear, ring, multiple
rings, and etc.  It can interface drop-side signals from 2 Mb/s to 45
Mbit/s for the PDH hierarchy.  The product can manage 2.5 Gbit/s and 10
Gbit/s lambdas.

   T::CORE is designed to offer optimized cost-performance starting with
its smallest configuration of 320 Gbit/s, up to 5 Tbit/s.  T::CORE
provides a high level of availability, keeping service provisioning and
service protection separate.  This platform collapses the functionality of
multiple network elements such as DCC, OCC, and E/OADM, into a single
highly optimized network element (NE).  The key elements of the T::NET
management and control system include automatic topology discovery,
resource dissemination, Point & Click connection provisioning, and
network-wide end-to-end path protection and restoration.  Service
providers know OPEX is dramatically influenced by ease of service
provisioning and on-going network maintenance.  T::NET capabilities help
carriers reduce OPEX with automatic discovery, including Plug & Play
neighbors and resources introduction, as well as status and topology
identification.  These distributed, dynamic routing capabilities allow
rapid, cost-effective turn-up of new nodes and additional bandwidth
without extensive line operations required today.

   This company's OMX Optical Transport Switch was developed, mainly, for
metro applications.  But it also can be used in backbone networks.  Its
switching fabric has a granularity of VT1/DS1 to STS-Nc signals, including
transmuxing of M13 traffic.  A GMPLS-based control plane and OIF UNI
support effective automation of provisioning and seamless multi-vendor
interoperability.  InelliOp management center combines EMS, CORBA-based
gateway, and planning tools.

   This company developed a line of CityStream products, which combines
traditional ADM, DCS, FR access device, ATM service access multiplexer,
ATM edge switch, IP router functionality, and DWDM system--all in one
shelf of a standard bay.  An interesting feature of this product is that
the same multi-port DS-3 module will support any combination of clear
channel DS-3, ATM DS-3, packet based DS-3, or transmutiplexed DS-3s.  This
protocol agility also extends to the optical interfaces.  Protocols for
each type are programmable on a per port basis.  Among other topologies,
it supports mesh configurations.

   This company has demonstrated its PXS 540 products.  These products
combine in one device TDM+Optical+Packet switched services. It allows
point-and click provisioning among multiple networks.

   This company introduced a varied line of optical switches.  RAYexpress
is customer premises/MAN equipment scalable from one lambda (2.5 Gbit/s or
10 Gbit/s) up to a mix of four protected or eight unprotected individual
add/drop channels.  It has an extremely small footprint suitable for CPE.
A GMPLS-based control plane supports it.

   Wavelength Switch and OADM can serve either as a pure optical switch,
or as an OEO switch.  It can interwork with multiple RAYexpresses,
deployed in customer locations.

   The Aurora Optical Switch currently ships with 1.28 Tbit/s capacity and
is scalable to 20 Tbit/s.  As mentioned above, vendors of these products,
at the present time, face a dramatic drop in demand, and it is unclear how
far Tellium went after making a couple of sales.   The Aurora Optical
Switch has 2.5 Gbit/s and 10 Gbit/s interfaces (OC-48/OC-48c/STM16/STM16c,
OC-192/OC-192c/STM64/STM64c).  Tellium affiliated with NEC to utilize NEC
DWDM systems with the switch.

The software that powers this switch, StarNet Operating System, uses a
number of algorithms and protocols for achieving fast and seamless mesh
restoration at the optical layer.  Such restoration can be provided at the
OC-48/STM16 level.  Through the use A-Z provisioning and standards-based
routing and signaling protocols, the Aurora switch enables automated
delivery of new optical services.  This switch can expand its capacity
while in service.

   This company has a line of products based on a switching fabric that is
protocol and rate transparent.  The OMS 2100 is a lambda-level optical
switch for applications in small and medium sized networks.  It starts
with 200 Gbit/s switching matrix, which can go up to 800 Gb/s in the
future.  The OMS 2200 is a larger switch scalable from 160 Gb/s to 640
Gb/s.  The OMS 3100 is a switch that can go to 2.56 Tb/s.  The company
offers various protection schemes, including mesh protection.  IQWorks OS
in the control plane, based on GMPLS, automatically discovers network

The key feature of these products is that TeraBurst switching fabric is
analog, i.e., it is transparent to signal formats and rates and switches
analog signals.  The TeraBurst system contains an analog electrical switch
fabric (think of a cross-bar switch, that handles electrical streams in a
manner similar to an all-optical fabric. The wideband switch is
essentially a millimeter-wave device that enables the system to switch the
analog electrical equivalents of lambdas.  This switch provides strictly
non-blocking route selection within the fabric for connectivity from any
input port to any output port.  A 64x64 switch can accommodate
non-blocking switching of 64 OC-192/STM64 signals, or any combination of
lower rates.


Development in this class of switches was dramatically affected by the
overall slowdown in telecommunications.  Companies such as Lucent,
Tellabs, and Nortel stopped all R&D in this area, and discontinued already
introduced products due to a lack of market demand.  The surviving
products, in many cases, became hybrids--combining an OEO matrix with
separate OOO matrix on the same platform.

All OOO switching at the present time uses MEMS (micro-electromechanical
mirrors) technology.  Competition between OEO switch vendors and OOO
switch vendors led to the dramatic reduction in price for OOO switches.

Calient Networks
   The DimondWave Photonic Switch provides seamless scalability from 8 to
4096 ports.  The ports are transparent for signal rates from Fiber
Channels to OC-768.  It has a selective OEO support for bridging legacy
applications such as Fiber Channel and Gigabit Ethernet applications.  The
latest information is that development of this switch was put on hold.

   The Corvis Optical-Convergence Switch (OCS) is a hybrid, which combines
two different switching fabrics (OEO and OOO) under a single hardware
platform, control plane, and NMS.  This solution's OEO fabric can serve as
an edge switch, grooming STS-1/VC4 traffic and performing SONET/SDH
aggregation required for network efficiency and reconfiguration for
ingress into the core transport network.  The switch also can provide
lambda switching using the OOO fabric for higher bandwidth services that
do not require grooming and aggregation.

   In a future release (R2.1), Alcatel promised to introduce two fabrics
in the 1674 Lambda Gate, one being OEO, and one pure optical.

Sorrento Networks
   This company developed a switching platform, TeraMatrix, based on MEMS
technology.  The platform can handle up to 64 lambdas.  A control plane
uses GMPLS software.

   This paper provides a comprehensive survey of the commercially
available optical switches that provide a basis for optical intelligent
networks.  There are a number of reasons to develop such networks:
* Improve network survivability;
* Improve network reliability;
* Increase the number and speed of lambdas;
* Make restoration process less dependent on the network topology;
* Increase the number of nodes in a network region;
* Provide dynamic network reconfiguration;
* Simplify provisioning process;
* Automate provisioning process;
* Simplify network operations;
* Reduce spare capacity costs.

These reasons are pushing vendors to develop intelligent optical networks,
for the deployment of 40 Gbit/s pipes--they still look for a brighter
tomorrow.  In any case, this paper shows that a growing number of
manufacturers are working in the area of optical intelligent networks,
despite a market at the present time where demand for these network
applications almost does not exist.

Optical intelligent networks will combine a large bandwidth (in Tbit/s)
with a sophisticated control plane.  So far, all indications are that this
control plane will be based on the GMPLS protocol (current G.8080 does not
specify a particular protocol for a control plane, it outlines only an
architecture).  This control plane supports many network features:
self-restoration, adaptive spare capacity, shared spare capacity,
automatic provisioning, and others.  It is also envisioned that with an
intelligent network structure it would be easy and cost-effective to build
homogenous networks that span all of today's boundaries--unifying access,
metropolitan, core.

The ultimate end-user customer dreams of the OOO switch as the
next-generation technology.  But it is OEO switches that are implemented,
in limited numbers, in networks today.

This is the second half of the report, which started in the previous issue
of "ViewsLetter on Provisioning."  Registered users at Webtorials.Com may
access the entire document directly at:
Others may access it after registering (at no charge) at
    --William A. Flanagan, Editor and Publisher, ViewsLetter

"Flanagan Consulting" and "ViewsLetter" are Service Marks of W. A. Flanagan, Inc.
 Updated:  11 June  2003

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