ADVA added a trio of updates to its optical transport product targeted at metro fiber deployments. The updates include increased support for software-defined networking (SDN) and synchronization of 5G technologies.
The company said the updates are focused on metro fiber deployments. ADVA noted those deployments are witnessing increased demand from data centers, carrier hotels, enterprises, radio access networks, and broadband access points.
“What’s deployed today is rather static infrastructure. It’s fixed and was designed to be as cheap as possible when it was deployed,” said Michael Ritter, VP of technical marketing at ADVA. “Now, operators want more agility and SDN control. This cannot be addressed with what’s in the field today.”
The updates include a ROADM-based photonic layer designed to reduce operational costs of metro networks. The MicroConnect platform includes SDN control over footprint, configuration, and cabling needs of deployments. This level of control can help network operators increase efficiency across their deployments and potentially save costs.
Ritter said a greater level of flexibility and control are important for operators in supporting increased demand.
“You need to have this flexibility and SDN control over the optical layer to support a more flexible infrastructure,” Ritter said.
ADVA said the product supports a flexible and automated optical layer “without the cost of traditional ROADM technology.”
ROADMs are designed to control modulated infrared and visible light beams of various wavelengths in a fiber optic network. They are typically used in long-haul systems that employ wavelength division multiplexing.
The second update is a new optical transport network cross-connect designed to provide more control over network resources. The OpenFabric product can remove slot capacity assignments of data traveling over the network, or allow for the mix of optical services and scale as needed. Ritter said the service provides network operators with the ability to “groom” traffic to meet demand.
The 5G synchronization update uses time-sensitive technologies to improve optical network performance and automatically compensate for delay asymmetries. Ritter said the TrueTime product hits an important latency aspect of 5G networks that are seeing use from more time-sensitive applications like the Internet of Things (IoT) and autonomous vehicles.
“An example is in providing an in-band solution for mobile network backhaul to eliminate issues that can create a delay in symmetry over time,” Ritter said.
Simple SDN Control
The updates include a mix of software and hardware solutions, though ADVA noted the growing need for greater software control over network infrastructure.
“We’ve built each of these technologies with operations teams in mind and ensured simple SDN control through our FSP Network Hypervisor,” explained Christoph Glingener, CTO and COO at ADVA Optical Networking, in a statement.
ADVA earlier this year launched a network hypervisor designed to provide SDN control to legacy optical networks. The product creates an abstracted view of the physical infrastructure to help manage the photonic transmission systems, and improve network automation and optimization.
“We found out when we talked with customers that many wanted to continue using their own infrastructure,” Ritter explained. “Our hypervisor product allows for that. We don’t want to make it any more complicated.”