Nortel Networks has launched a range of dense wave division multiplexing (DWDM) products for the large corporate market, following the acquisition last year of Canadian startup Cambrian Systems.
DWDM massively increases fibre capacity by separating the wavelengths of light in a fibre optic cable and using each as a separate broadband channel.
Nortel announced at the Cebit show in Hannover this week that it has adopted Cambrian's Optera line of DWDM products for use by carriers and large enterprises on metropolitan area networks. It has also added its existing long haul DWDM products to the Optera line.
Before the acquisition, Cambrian was pitching the products mainly at the carrier market, but Nortel now has the large enterprise market in its sights, according to Nic Du Feu, business development director at Nortel's international optical networks.
The advantages for businesses, according to Du Feu, will be less money spent on fibre, higher bandwidth and greater reliability for transport of mission critical applications.
Businesses with dispersed offices in a metropolitan area could connect their buildings using one fibre instead of six. Over that network they could run IP, ATM, multimedia and voice.
"Optera Metro means they can ship data around the metropolitan area using less fibre," said Du Feu.
Optera Metro uses 32 wavelengths to deliver data rates of up to 80Gbps per fibre. The carrier product, Optera LH, has a total capacity of 320Gbps per fibre.
In addition to using wave division multiplexing (WDM) in the metropolitan area, Nortel also launched at Cebit a switching products that brings WDM to the Lan - the Accelar 8000 enterprise switch.
Built using Cambrian technology, Accelar 8000 scales from 50Gbps to 256Gbps using hot swappable line cards. Accelar 8000 will ship next month and retail at $7,995 for a 10 slot chassis.
Existing research into metropolitan area DWDM at Nortel was scrapped following the acquisition of Cambrain and around 40 of Nortel's R&D staff were transferred to the Optera division.
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