21 May 2010


Infinera accelerates 100G coherent system shipment to 2012

Infinera Corp of Sunnyvale, CA, USA says that it is accelerating its product development plans for next-generation optical systems to take advantage of evolving market trends and technological advances in product development. The new program includes plans to ship systems based on 100Gb/s coherent transmission in 2012 to meet the growth in market demand for optical networks providing 8Tb/s of capacity per fiber.

The new 100G systems will be based on Infinera's next-generation indium phosphide-based photonic integrated circuits (PICs), which integrate the functionality of hundreds of optical devices to provide 500Gb/s of optical capacity on a single pair of chips (dubbed 500G PICs). The systems are designed to use coherent detection to deliver an optical system with ultra-long-haul reach, fiber capacity of 8Tb/s, and the disruptive economics of photonic integration. Infinera is also planning to add non-PIC-based coherent capability to its DTN (delay-tolerant networking) system in 2011, to meet the needs of users that require a 40Gb/s solution.

Infinera says that service providers have shown growing interest in 100G as the best step forward from existing 10G networks, driven by continuing growth in mobile, video, and other sources of network traffic, as well as a growing consensus that 100G networks will benefit from more rapid price reductions than the market has seen for 40G technology. "We expect 100G coherent technology to be widely available in the 2013 timeframe at price points that make it very competitive with 40G coherent technology," says Infonetics analyst Andrew Schmitt. "We expect that many service providers will opt to go directly from 10G to 100G at that point, making 100G the predominant long-haul technology of the coming decade," he adds.

Infinera's product development team has been working on both 40G and 100G solutions, including key optical and electrical enabling technologies. Recent engineering milestones, such as its transmission of a 100G signal over 1600km of fiber using coherent modulation technology, has enabled Infinera to accelerate its timetable for a 100G solution. The firm believes that this demonstration shows that an Infinera 100G system, based on its unique 500G PICs, will be able to meet ultra-long-haul-reach requirements while delivering a significant boost in fiber capacity at a better cost-per-bit.

"Infinera's 100G system will reach the market at a time that enables 100G mass adoption," expects CEO Tom Fallon. "Advanced features like digital bandwidth management and Bandwidth Virtualization, which customers expect from Infinera, will continue to deliver valuable benefits in our intelligent networks," he adds. The firm believes that traditional muxponder-based DWDM systems become even more inefficient when carrying a wide range of lower-speed services over 100G wavelengths.

Infinera expects 40G demand to be limited, but believes a 40G solution may be required in the short term for applications needing additional fiber capacity, including terrestrial and submarine deployments. To meet those needs, the firm aims to deliver 40G capability for the DTN next year.  It adds that 40G networks will offer all the benefits of its digital intelligence and a seamless transition from existing 10G networks.

Infinera believes that its product development plan, including 40G and 100G networks, provides the industry's best roadmap to accommodate future needs. Strong bandwidth growth creates the pressing challenge of expanding networks while trying to maximize profitability amidst declining prices for telecom services. The new set of products is intended to enable service providers to expand their networks quickly and cost-effectively, while the disruptive economics of 500G PICs help them to generate better business results.

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