Lucent unveils new DWDM system

Lucent Technologies Inc. this week announced a 1.6T bps long haul optical networking system and said that Time Warner Telecom Inc. is the first customer for the new product.

The Lucent WaveStar OLS 1.6T is a “high-capacity” dense wave division multiplexing (DWDM) system that Lucent says can enable every person in the U.S. and Canada to simultaneously transmit a one-page e-mail across the same network. Time Warner Telecom delivers “last-mile” broadband data, dedicated Internet access and voice services for businesses in 39 metropolitan areas in the U.S.

The WaveStar OLS 1.6T, which will be available this spring, offers up to 160 10G bps unidirectional wavelengths on one fiber. The system uses Lucent’s “L-Band” optical amplifier, which enables network providers to transmit traffic through a previously unused frequency, or wavelength range, in a fiber.

Using this amplifier and a new combiner/splitter that Lucent unveiled with the OLS 1.6T system, a network provider can double the number of wavelengths transmitted on the fiber from 80 to 160.

The WaveStar OLS 1.6T is an outgrowth of Lucent’s WaveStar OLS 800G, which was announced in April 2000. The OLS 800G uses DWDM to provide up to 320 2.5G bps wavelengths, or 80 10G bps wavelengths, for a total capacity of 800G bps.

The OLS 800G is an upgrade of Lucent’s WaveStar OLS 400G, which is a DWDM system with half the capacity of the 800G.

A network operator can upgrade from the 800G to the 1.6T using the combiner/splitter without service interruption, Lucent says.

Under the 3-year, US$100 million agreement with Time Warner Telecom, Lucent will initially install an 800G OLS system into Time Warner Telecom’s western region network connecting Los Angeles; San Francisco; Oakland; Portland, Ore.; Seattle; Boise, Idaho; Las Vegas; and Phoenix. Deployment is expected to be completed by mid-2001, and maximum distances will reach 600km to 800km over new and existing fiber, Lucent says.

Time Warner Telecom will use the combiner/splitter to upgrade to the 1.6T system when it requires that kind of bandwidth, Lucent says.

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