“Bandwidth demands continue to grow, and everyone thinks MSOs won’t be able to keep up with the costs,” says Gaylord Hart, director/MSO Market Segment at Infinera. “So far, they’ve been able to, but vendors have had to drop their prices to be competitive.”

And Hart believes prices for switching gear will drop again once his company’s newest product hits the market early in 2012: the DTN-X, touted by Infinera as “the first multi-terabit packet-optical transport network platform based on groundbreaking 500 Gbps Photonic Integrated Circuits (PICs), and designed for global service providers facing increasing demands for bandwidth driven by video, mobile and cloud-based services.”

Unveiled this morning, the DTN-X reportedly can integrate switching with DWDM without trade-offs in switching capacity. “The architecture of the DTN-X extends the ease of use and reliability of Infinera’s successful DTN in a new multi-terabit platform that scales for the future, is simple to operate and efficiently reduces the number of elements in the network,” company literature says. 

Infinera is introducing third-generation 500 Gbps PICs it says integrate more than 600 optical functions and deliver the “world’s first 500 Gbps superchannels, providing a foundation for the DTN-X’s superior scale, simplicity and efficiency.” (To read more about Infinera’s Terabit plans, click here).

In a conference call this morning, company officials said the DTN-X will deliver 5 Tbps of non-blocking OTN switching in a single bay; in subsequent releases, it will be upgradeable to resilient multi-bay configurations providing more than 100 Tbps of non-blocking OTN and MPLS switching.

“We remain committed to our customers and will continue to drive innovation that helps them win in their markets,” said Tom Fallon, Infinera’s president and CEO. “The DTN-X is a multi-terabit-class platform that enables service providers to build scalable, simple and efficient optical transport networks, ultimately making them more profitable.”

Clean-Sheet Design

Hart told CT Reports that the DTN-X was designed from “a clean sheet” to combine three technology building blocks – PICs, custom switching ASICs and intelligent GMPLS software. By doing this, the DTN-X platform can be configured with as much as 5 Tbps of DWDM or service interfaces in each bay or any combination of the two, without any loss of OTN switching capacity. According to Hart, Infinera’s closest competitor only can ramp up to 3.8 Tbps.

“This really is a revolutionary product,” he notes. Besides its capacity, the DTN-X also cuts down on the number of modules needed to provide a nationwide network, the number of fiber patches, the number of chassis and total rack space. Hart says it also cuts power consumption in half.

“We build a product that’s highly differentiated and that allows our customers to deliver highly differentiated services,” he told us, saying Verizon is “very excited” about the DTN-X because it needs capacity and packet capability. “If you don’t use PICs, you are using discrete designs that just can’t scale, and you won’t be able to migrate to a 100-terabit system.”

Adds Randy Nicklas, CTO at XO Communications, “We have used DTN as a competitive advantage to simplify our network, deploy services faster and increase bandwidth efficiency. We are looking forward to the new DTN-X platform that will help scale these qualities while delivering the same ease of use that XO Communications has grown accustomed to from Infinera.”


Infinera will be introducing a full-rack, multi-bay-ready chassis and a half-rack chassis early next year. The DTN-X is interoperable with the DTN platform and supports 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 GbE), 40 Gigabit Ethernet (40 GbE), 100 Gigabit Ethernet (100 GbE), 10 Gbps SONET/SDH, 40 Gbps SONET/SDH, Fibre Channel, OTN and clear-channel interfaces.

-Debra Baker

The Daily


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