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Fighting the capacity crunch, Orange and Alcatel-Lucent set 400 Gbps fiber link live

People have been messing around with this in the labs but now it’s real and in the field: Alcatel-Lucent(s alu) and France Telecom-Orange have deployed a long-distance terrestrial 400 Gbps optical fiber link that, as it uses 44 such wavelengths, can carry a whopping 17.6 terabits per second (Tbps) of traffic in aggregate.

Why is this important? Because telecoms operators’ networks are always facing a capacity crunch, mainly thanks to the explosion in cloud and online video, and there’s always a need to pump more bits through the system. We’re now looking at the next generation of such connectivity, alive and kicking.

The link, which is based on Alcatel-Lucent’s 400 Gbps Photonic Service Engine, runs between Paris and Lyon, and the first tester is the French educational and research network Renater. The early use cases for this bump up from now-standard 100 Gbps wavelength technology will most likely be found in business and research, for services such as telepresence that will make good use of the boosted bandwidth.

3 Responses to “Fighting the capacity crunch, Orange and Alcatel-Lucent set 400 Gbps fiber link live”

  1. Although this is a significant milestone for ALU, this announcement appears to ignore the fact that Infinera started shipping 500G optical super-channels in Q2’12 and has announced that 22 customers have selected the Infinera solution with deployments carrying live traffic on 500G super-channels across the globe today.

    Here is one example of 500G long-haul super-channels that have been in place since last year, the Europe Persia Express Gateway (EPEG) deployment which includes Infinera’s DTN-X for the Cable&Wireless Worldwide portion of the route:

    Mark Showalter
    Infinera Corporate Communications

    • Kang Gary

      This is comparing apples to pears… Infinera cannot offer 500G systems today. What they can offer is 500G PICs (chipset essentially) which can only do 100G transponders/muxponders today… 500G PICs is equivalent to ALU PSE and can be considered as enabling technologies for 100G and 100G+ systems.

      What ALU archieved with France Telecom is a commercial deployment with 400G muxponders which is powered by PSE.

      To make it simple:
      ALU started to ship single carrier 100G coherent solutions back in June, 2010. Infinera only started to ship 100G solutions with DTN-X two years later in 2H, 2012.

      ALU today can offer 400G coherent solutions to France Telecom. Infinera’s 500G solutions are no where in terms of commerical deployment…