Alcatel-Lucent demos Petabit MIMO-SDM fibre tech

Bell Labs, the research arm of Alcatel-Lucent, has announced the first demonstration of its space-division multiplexed optical multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO-SDM) system.

It is claimed that this technology overcomes the ‘Shannon limit’ for maximum data rate over fibre, with the potential to increase fibre capacities to over a Petabit (1,000 Terabits) per second.the 6×6 MIMO-SDM experiment was conducted over a 60-km-long coupled-mode fiber.

“This experiment represents a major breakthrough in the development of future optical transport,” said Bell Labs President Marcus Weldon. “We are at the crossroads of a huge change in communications networks, with the advent of 5G Wireless and cloud networking underway. Operators and enterprises alike will see their networks challenged by massive increases in traffic.”

In a busy week Alcatel-Lucent announced it has joined the ONOS movement that aims to keep software defined networking (SDN) open and non-proprietary.

The California based Open Networking (ON.Lab) has announced the addition of the equipment vendor to its ONOS project. The Open source SDN Network Operating System project (AKA ONOS) is a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project funded by and run for service providers, equipment makers and networks operators. It is run from the ON.Lab, a non-profit organization founded by SDN inventors and leaders from Stanford University and UC Berkeley, with a view to foster an open source community whose inventions will help realise the full potential of SDN.

Alcatel-Lucent said it aims to contribute its expertise in order to build ONOS into a carrier-grade SDN network operating system. It will have achieved that, according to the vendor, if it has designed a network characterised by high availability, scalability, performance and rich northbound and southbound abstractions. Alcatel-Lucent is to work with service providers, vendors, collaborators and individual contributors to encourage the adoption of network function virtualisation (NFV) as part of a spirit of open innovation, it said.

Alcatel-Lucent’s main contribution will be its skill set in building integrated IP and optical network infrastructures, based on its experience of managing IP and optical networks for both the data centre industry and for carrier networks.

This expertise was exemplified yesterday, Alcatel said, when it announced its appointment to speed Cape Town’s digital transformation with advanced IP routing technology. Alcatel-Lucent partner Bytes Systems Integration is to use the vendor’s 7950 XRS core routers as the building blocks for an IP core in the South African tourism and economic hub.

“Open source object models are the new baseline for multi-vendor interoperability. By committing engineering resources and becoming an active participant of ONOS, we will be in a much better position to contribute our carrier SDN knowledge and experience to open source initiatives,” said Steve Vogelsang, CTO for Alcatel-Lucent’s IP Routing and Transport business.

Alcatel-Lucent joins ONOS founding members AT&T, NTT Communications, SK Telecom, China Unicom, Ciena, Cisco, Ericsson, Fujitsu, Huawei, Intel and NEC.

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