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Ciena shops for photonic technology for line-side edge  

Briefing: DWDM developments

Part 3: Acquisitions and silicon photonics

Ciena is to acquire the high-speed photonics components division of Teraxion for $32 million. The deal includes 35 employees and Teraxion’s indium phosphide and silicon photonics technologies. The systems vendor is making the acquisition to benefit its coherent-based packet-optical transmission systems in metro and long-haul networks.


Sterling Perrin

“Historically Ciena has been a step ahead of others in introducing new coherent capabilities to the market,” says Ron Kline, principal analyst, intelligent networks at market research company, Ovum. “The technology is critical to own if they want to maintain their edge.”

“Bringing in-house not everything, just piece parts, are becoming differentiators,” says Sterling Perrin, senior analyst at Heavy Reading.    

Ciena designs its own WaveLogic coherent DSP-ASICs but buys its optical components. Having its own photonics design team with expertise in indium-phosphide and silicon photonics will allow Ciena to develop complete line-side systems, optimising the photonics and electronics to benefit system performance.

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Next-generation coherent adds sub-carriers to capabilities

Briefing: DWDM developments

Part 2: Infinera's coherent toolkit 

Source: Infinera

Infinera has detailed coherent technology enhancements implemented using its latest-generation optical transmission technology. The system vendor is still to launch its newest  photonic integrated circuit (PIC) and FlexCoherent DSP-ASIC but has detailed features the CMOS and indium phosphide ICs support.

The techniques highlight the increasing sophistication of coherent technology and an ever tighter coupling between electronics and photonics.    

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BT makes plans for continued traffic growth in its core 

Briefing: DWDM developments

Part 1

Kevin Smith: “A lot of the work we are doing with the trials have demonstrated we can scale our networks gracefully rather than there being a brick wall of a problem.”

BT is confident that its core network will accommodate the expected IP traffic growth over the next decade. Traffic in BT’s core is growing at between 35 and 40 percent annually, compared to the global average growth rate of 20 to 30 percent. BT attributes its higher growth to the rollout of fibre-based broadband across the UK.

The telco is deploying 100-gigabit wavelengths in high-traffic areas of its network. “These are key sites where we're running out of wavelengths such that we need to implement higher-speed ones,” says Kevin Smith, research leader for BT’s transport networks. The operator is now trialling 200-gigabit wavelengths using polarisation multiplexing, 16-quadrature amplitude modulation (PM-16QAM).

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MultiPhy raises $17M to develop 100G serial interfaces

Start-up MultiPhy has raised U.S. $17 million to develop 100-gigabit single-wavelength technology for the data centre. Semtech has announced it is one of the companies backing the Israeli fabless start-up, the rest coming from venture capitalists and at least one other company.

MultiPhy is developing chips to support serial 100-gigabit-per-second transmission using 25-gigabit optical components. The design will enable short reach links within the data centre and up to 80km point-to-point links for data centre interconnect. 


Source: MultiPhy


“It is not the same chip [for the two applications] but the same technology core,” says Avi Shabtai, the CEO of MultiPhy. The funding will be used to bring products to market as well as expand the company’s marketing arm.

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Books in 2015 - Final Part 

The final part of what industry figures have been reading in 2015 - Part 3 of 3

Sterling Perring, senior analyst, Heavy Reading  

My ambitions to read far exceed my actual reading output, and because I have such a backlog of books on my reading list, I generally don’t read the latest.

Source: The Age of Spiritual Machines

I have long been fascinated by a graphic from futurist Ray Kurweil which depicts the exponential growth of computing and plots it against living intelligence. The graphic is from Kurzweil’s 1999 book on artificial intelligence The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence, which I read in 2015.

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Books in 2015 - Part 2

More book recommendations - Part 2 

Yuriy Babenko, senior network architect, Deutsche Telekom

The books I particularly enjoyed in 2015 dealt with creativity, strategy, and social and organisational development.

People working in IT are often right-brained people; we try to make our decisions rationally, verifying hypotheses and build scenarios and strategies. An alternative that challenges this status quo and looks at issues from a different perspective is Thinkertoys by Michael Michalko.

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Arista adds coherent CFP2 modules to its 7500 switch 

Arista Networks has developed a coherent optical transport line card for its 7500 high-end switch series. The line card hosts six 100 gigabit CFP2-ACO (analogue coherent optics) and has a reach of up to 5,000 km.


Martin Hull

Several optical equipment makers have announced ‘stackable’ platforms specifically to link data centres in the last year.

Infinera’s Cloud Xpress was the first while Coriant recently detailed its Groove G30 platform. Arista’s announcement offers data centre managers an alternative to such data centre interconnect platforms by adding dense wavelength-division multiplexing (DWDM) optics directly onto its switch. 

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