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Metconnex expands wavelength selective switch portfolio; Metconnex, Hitachi Cable, and ANDevices showcase ROADM building blocks

March 9, 2005

3 Min Read

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Metconnex, a leading supplier of wavelength selective switch (WSS) modules for use in reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexers (ROADMs), today introduced at OFC/NFOEC 2005 the WSS 5200; a 1x4 WSS offered at a price point not previously possible. During the exhibition, the company will also showcase their large scale WSS capability which includes a 1x14 and 1x24 WSS targeted at emerging network applications. These announcements complement the company’s existing 1x9 WSS and reinforce the ability of its hybrid integration platform to offer optimized products for a range of ROADM requirements.

This range of long haul and metro requirements is driven by networks’ evolution from point-to-point applications to various architectures including: standalone rings, interconnected rings and mesh. To meet these needs, Metconnex is responding with a portfolio of optimized products in line with market demand, based on a hybrid integration platform enabled by planar lightwave circuits (HI-PLC). The HI-PLC architecture leverages the cost advantage of PLC technology, while offering high performance, low power consumption and extensibility. This solution provides a number of advantages over alternative approaches such as wavelength blockers, IPLC-based multiplexer/switches and bulk optic-based WSS.

“Optical component suppliers are challenged with developing innovative product platforms that can meet requirements of price sensitive metro with the high performance of long-haul" said Daryl Inniss, Director of the Optical Component Program at RHK, Inc. “Metconnex's announcement highlights the power of the HI-PLC platform and its ability to address both requirements.”

Based on a patent pending modular architecture, the WSS 5200 is a 1x4, 100 GHz, 45 channel wavelength selective switch available with a price point not achievable by other WSS platforms. It will be qualified and available coincident with the company’s WSS 5400, 1x9 offering. The module’s small form factor, industry standard interfaces and multi-port capability make it ideal to upgrade existing wavelength blocker-based solutions. For hub applications which require 100% add/drop, this 1x4 WSS can be combined with standard passive optical modules to offer a cost effective alternative to IPLC-based ROADMs. This solution provides improved performance and a built in upgrade path to multi-degree connectivity.

---In a separate release---

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Metconnex, Hitachi Cable and ANDevices, today announced the showcasing of their advanced modules in a live, high performance, multi-degree ROADM (Reconfigurable Optical Add Drop Multiplexer) subsystem demonstration at OFC/NFOEC 2005. This solution highlights the optimal level of integration for subsystem and system suppliers to deliver maximum cascadability for today’s 10 Gigabits per second (Gbps) requirements and to support emerging ring interconnect, mesh and 40 Gbps requirements without a forklift upgrade. The demonstration is being conducted at Metconnex’s booth #1170.

Unlike those based on wavelength blockers or integrated planar lightwave circuit (IPLC)-based switch/multiplexers, this subsystem delivers cost effective, multi-degree connectivity by combining an optimized WSS with industry standard modules from leading suppliers. The four degree ROADM subsystem includes north, east, south and west interfaces and consists of the following building blocks: Metconnex’s recently announced WSS 5200, a 45 channel 1x4 Wavelength Selective Switch (WSS); Hitachi Cable’s multi-source agreement (MSA)-compliant Variable Optical Attenuator (VOA)/Multiplexer; and ANDevice’s APMUX1100 Array Waveguide Grating (AWG).

The modules’ high level command interfaces have been integrated into a single graphical display enabling any of the subsystem’s wavelengths to be added, dropped, attenuated or routed to multiple express paths The wide, flat passband of the subsystem’s WSS is compatible with 32 module cascades at 10 Gbps and 16 cascades at 40 Gbps and supports more than a 40% increase in wavelengths over alternative approaches. A demonstration overview can be found at www.metconnex.com/Events/OFCdemo.htm.

“Carriers are now demanding multi-degree ROADM solutions with 40 Gbps compatibility to provide a smooth upgrade path to ring interconnect and mesh architectures and to support increasing traffic growth”, said Peter Becke, Metconnex’s president and chief executive officer. “Our hybrid integrated PLC (HI-PLC) technology enables us to deliver a portfolio of products including the 1x4 WSS we are showcasing, the industry’s most cost effective WSS, optimized for this hub application.”


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