Marconi had to recall 'hundreds' of amplifiers last year after a JDSU component failed

January 31, 2002

2 Min Read
JDSU in EDFA Recall

Evidence has come to light indicating that JDS Uniphase Inc. (Nasdaq: JDSU; Toronto: JDU) has had to replace hundreds of defective Erbium Doped-Fiber Amplifiers (EDFAs) in equipment that at least one of its customers had already shipped to carriers.

The customer in question, Marconi PLC (Nasdaq/London: MONI) had to recall “a few hundred” amplifiers with faulty JDSU EDFAs, according to Steve Ferguson, Marconi’s photonics market strategy manager.

The problem was discovered last April, and all of the amplifiers had been replaced by the fourth quarter of 2001, according to Ferguson. Marconi had kept careful records of the part numbers used in the manufacture of the amplifiers and was thus able to locate them quickly. Ferguson says JDSU was very helpful in getting the suspect parts replaced.

Telecom Italia was one of the carriers that had to return amplifiers to Marconi after encountering problems, according to Ferguson. “We might have been the first to find the problem," he adds. Telecom Italia’s amplifiers have particularly powerful pump lasers that might have resulted in early failure of JDSU’s EDFAs.

Ferguson says the problem occurred because the pump lasers generated harmonics that caused epoxy in the EDFAs to deteriorate, and this in turn led to problems with couplers embedded in the epoxy. He wasn’t absolutely sure that it wascouplers; it may have been filters, as another source suggests.

Ferguson didn’t know whether other systems vendors using JDSU’s EDFAs had recalled amplifiers, or whether the whole problem was now in the past.

One source, who requested anonymity, indicates the problem with JDSU's EDFAs may not be limited to Marconi. It's possible that other JDSU customers -- perhaps including Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU) and Nortel Networks Corp. (NYSE/Toronto: NT) -- have experienced problems similar to Marconi's. Neither Lucent nor Nortel was able to comment at press time.

A JDSU spokesperson says she is unaware of any product recalls or of the situation at Telecom Italia.

— Mary Jander, Senior Editor, and Peter Heywood, Founding Editor, Light Reading

Subscribe and receive the latest news from the industry.
Join 62,000+ members. Yes it's completely free.

You May Also Like