BTI Makes the Metro Dynamic

BTI Systems Inc. is outfitting its 7000 series equipment with the ability to adjust optical power on the fly, so they don't have to manually adjust the optical network node by node every time something gets out of whack.

The company's announcement Tuesday morning includes new ROADM and amplifier cards for the 7000. The really interesting part, though, is an optical control system, added to the 7000, that will rebalance optical power automatically.

The feature is called the Dynamic Optical Layer, and it's due to ship "in September," BTI officials say, fully aware that September starts on Thursday.

Why this matters
The long-haul network already has these capabilities, but BTI appears to be the first to bring them into metro/aggregation networks. Increased automation has been a strong trend in optical networking as equipment vendors try to find ways to make their gear cheaper. Lowered operating expenses -- such as avoiding those manual reconfigurations to the optical network -- are a big component of that.

It's worth noting that Infinera Corp. (Nasdaq: INFN)'s metro gear can do this rebalancing. But Infinera's equipment simply avoids the problem by restarting every wavelength at every node, so optical power doesn't fade as a signal passes through multiple nodes.

For more
A bit more about what been happening in the metro optical network.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

COMMENTS Add Comment
mpreath 12/5/2012 | 4:55:05 PM
re: BTI Makes the Metro Dynamic

Doesn't Cisco's ROADM architecutre already do this via automatic power control? Providing balancing to prevent tilt ...

wssfun 12/5/2012 | 4:55:01 PM
re: BTI Makes the Metro Dynamic

This is nothing new.  Dynamic networking, including real-time wave balancing, has been done by several vendors via WSS ROADMs Tellabs, Fujitsu, ALU, Marconi, Cisco, etc.

INFN's technology (Digital ROADM), while offering power balancing, is totally different so not sure why they are mentioned in this article.

I would be interested to hear something original in an article like this.  It is like releasing a press release that someone is offering hybrid cars.


rahat.hussain 12/5/2012 | 4:55:00 PM
re: BTI Makes the Metro Dynamic

some internal dialogue in the bti marketing department:

a: "wow, automatic power balancing, really? let's call it path-breaking! an all-time first!"

b: "no wait, it has already been done in long-haul ..."

a: "so, .. path-breaking for metro! an all-time first for metro!"

b: "but wait, it has been done in metro as well."

a: "how come?"

b:"well turns out every wss shipped in the last several years does this! our guys have just incorporated  a wss and are mighty proud of it!"

a: "i see, but, now what? what do we do? how do we put lipstick on this pig?"

b: "oh, just send it out, no one will notice. and by the way, use the word touchless"

a: "nice touch boss! ok, done!

b: "now call craig, see if he will give us a front pager on lr"

a: "ok boss".

- odo

Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 4:54:53 PM
re: BTI Makes the Metro Dynamic

All right, all right, I get it. I overreached on this one.

I did oversimplify -- there's more to BTI's Dynamicness than power balancing. They describe it as an intelligence that watches the whole optical network - so you don't have to worry about things like wavelength reservations, for example.

Still not impressed? Probably not. I'll try to do better next time.

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