France Telecom-Orange and Alcatel-Lucent claim to have deployed “the world’s first optical link with a capacity of 400 Gbps per wavelength” on a live fibre-optic link between Paris and Lyon. This connection represents an important milestone for long-distance terrestrial network technology, the companies say.
The 400G wavelength increases overall capacity increased by a factor of four compared to the current maximum available. Using 44 wavelengths, the new optical link is capable of transmitting up to 17.6 Tbps of traffic in total.
RENATER, the public interest group that manages the communications network for education and research institutions in France, and a customer of Orange Business Services, will be the first to test the functionality of this new technology in a real-life situation.
Patrick Donath, managing director of RENATER, explains, “As part of our innovation program, we plan to test this optical fiber link in real conditions by using it to route traffic across one of our main backbone arteries between Paris and Lyon. This link transports the bulk of France’s scientific data that passes through our network. This pilot phase also aims to test the latest switching equipment supplied by major OEMs on a network running at this capacity and will enable us the anticipate the architecture of RENATER’s network in the coming years. A 400-Gbps network is an important step forward for the networks and research projects of tomorrow.”
France Telecom-Orange also pointed out that the single-wavelength technology will help reduce energy consumption on its network, while also optimizing operating and network maintenance costs.
By Pauline Rigby