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Optical/IP

Hitachi Preps P-OTS Box

CHICAGO -- Supercomm 2009 -- With its first new optical box in years, Hitachi Communication Technologies America Inc. (Hitachi-CTA) is joining the ranks of the packet-optical transport systems (P-OTS) vendors.

The company isn't disclosing much about the new AMN6400, other than the name and the claim that it's going to be 100-Gbit/s-ready. But Hitachi wanted to get word out to the world, and Supercomm was the last appropriate tradeshow being held before the box ships in general availability near the end of the year. (See Hitachi Intros 100G P-OTS Platform.)

The 6400 is the follow-up to established systems such as the AMN6100 DWDM platform and the AMN7100 transponder shelf. Some of those products date back more than a decade, so something new has been long in coming.

"We have products we're maintaining, but we haven't innovated for a long time" in optical, says Scott Wilkinson, Hitachi's vice president of product management and systems engineering.

The box is targeting the North American market at first, simply because that's where Hitachi expects the demand to be.

"In Japan, it's too late. They've already moved their backbones to MPLS," Wilkinson says. "In South America and Europe, although there are carriers who will use it, it's not going to do the volume it would in the United States."

The 6400 is going to be manufactured in Japan, but all the design and engineering work was done in North America, Wilkinson says. It hits all the usual P-OTS buttons, claiming hybrid packet and Optical Transport Network (OTN) switching and reconfigurable optical add-drop multiplexer (ROADM) capabilities.

Other recent P-OTS news:

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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