Alcatel-Lucent Explains the Importance of CDC-F Optical Networks

Next Generation Communications Blog

Alcatel-Lucent Explains the Importance of CDC-F Optical Networks

By: Paula Bernier, TMC Executive Editor

Today’s technology now allows a single fiber strand to carry up to 17.6 terabits per second of traffic. That’s the equivalent of transmitting 88 Blu-ray discs in a second. This ultra-broadband capability, and the new software-defined networks that service providers are embracing, have important impacts on optical networks further upstream.

“…we need to stay in the light/photonic domain as long as possible in order to reduce the cost associated with repeatedly converting wavelength photonic signals to electrical,” notes Scott Larrigan, senior marketing manager of IPR&T product and solution marketing at Alcatel-Lucent, in a recent TechZine posting, CDC-F optical networks propel us forward, and in the podcast embedded below.

While carriers already add to their fiber optic capacity by introducing different colors, or wavelengths, to move to 100gbps, 200gbps, and even 400gbps capacities, that only gets them part way there. There’s also now a need to more efficiently route high-capacity wavelengths in a cost effective manner, and an optical networking technology called CDC-F can allow for that.

“Together, CDC-F and SDN technologies are set to propel our networks forward – and make what’s science fiction today, a reality in the not too distant future,” says Larrigan. They enable what Alcatel-Lucent calls agile optical networking.

CDC-F optical networks are colorless, directionless, and contentionless (thus CDC). Their ability to dynamically optimize and reroute wavelength connections helps carriers recover network capacity so they have a longer lifespan. They lessen requirements for optical to electrical to optical conversions, saving capital equipment and power costs in the process. And with CDC-F, there’s no need for on-site visits to change or route wavelength connectivity.

Alcatel-Lucent today offers a CDC-F wavelength routing solution the Alcatel-Lucent 1830 Photonic Service Switch, which can both efficiently route wavelengths at scale, and deliver in-band per wavelength OAM that can precisely isolate wavelength issues throughout the network. A North America Tier 1 service provider will be leveraging this offering in its national optical core network.  

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