19 April 2022
Windstream completes first 400G ZR+ interoperability trials, using II-VI and Acacia modules
Optical solutions provider Windstream Wholesale of Little Rock, AK, USA has tested the interoperability of QSFP-DD form factor ZR+ pluggable modules from II-VI Inc of Saxonburg, PA, and Acacia Communications Inc of Maynard, MA (now part of Cisco). The tests established 400 Gigabit links in a production environment over a 1027km link. The team also leveraged the Marvell Deneb coherent DSP (digital signal processor) within a native 0dBm II-VI pluggable and the Acacia module using the Greylock DSP. Industry-standard oFEC (open forward-error correction) algorithms were also used in the trials.
“These successful trials demonstrate that Windstream Wholesale remains the optical technology leader in making 400G wavelengths the default deployment for large wholesale and hyperscale customers,” claims Buddy Bayer, president of Enterprise and Wholesale at Windstream. “Interoperability is key to simplifying high-performance networks in a cost- and energy-efficient manner, and no other service provider has done more than Windstream toward making it a reality in the marketplace,” he adds. “This significant achievement validates Windstream’s strategy of open, disaggregated optical networking.”
Windstream has also become the first service provider member of the OpenZR+ MSA (multi-source agreement). “We see the OpenZR+ community as well positioned to make progress around standardization and interoperability in the high-performance transceiver arena,” says Art Nichols, VP of network architecture and technology. “Our goal is not simply to take advantage of our interop and optimization learnings internally, but to also contribute to the industry as a whole in driving open networking forward,” he adds.
“The success of these trials validates the level of maturity of the 400G ZR+ ecosystem, which is essential to enable open systems and network architectures such as IP-over-DWDM,” comments Matthias Berger, VP, coherent technology, II-VI Inc.
“As one of the founding members of the OpenZR+ MSA, we are excited to see the industry embracing interoperability and moving towards open networking architectures,” says Tom Williams, senior director of marketing for Acacia and co-chair of the OpenZR+ MSA. “Interoperability and the introduction of new modules, such as our recently announced Bright 400ZR+ QSFP-DD pluggable, will be key to accelerating the adoption of router-based optics in transport networks,” he adds.
“The Marvell Deneb Coherent DSP has enabled a large open ecosystem of suppliers to drive rapid adoption of OpenZR+ in carrier and cloud networks,” claims Samuel Liu, Marvell’s senior director of product marketing.
Windstream’s Intelligent Converged Optical Network provides open and disaggregated networking infrastructure, enabling wholesale and enterprise technology customers to select unique custom routes, maintain operational insights with Windstream’s Network Intelligence functions, and place their networks closer to the edge to better serve end-users.