Alcatel-Lucent Launches SOFTNODE for Subsea Cables

Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks has introduced 1620 SOFTNODE asset, an “industry-first” platform that will enable the transmission of 240 terabit-per second (Tbit/s) on multiple fiber pairs.

The 1620 SOFTNODE has been selected by GoTo Networks for the Australia West Express system, the first direct undersea cable between Australia, the Middle East and Africa. The platform’s capabilities were also demonstrated during a recent field trial conducted over the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) system, which has been in service since December 2012. The field trial demonstrated a transmission of 12.6 Tbit/s of data per fiber pair.

The 1620 SOFTNODE will provide webscale connectivity between data centres and Points-of-Presence (PoPs) in different continents.

Additionally, the 1620 SOFTNODE will optimize the footprint in the landing station as the new terminal equipment dimensions are reduced by as much as ten times, also reducing power consumption by a factor of 2-3 compared to previous generation SLTE technology, the company explained.

Olivier Gautheron, Chief Technology Officer of Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks said: “New undersea plant is emerging offering larger spectrum and more fiber pairs to serve new data centers with ultra high capacity. At the same time, existing undersea plant designed with legacy technology needs to better support design capacity, connectivity and flexibility. By evolving the 1620 SLTE architecture to SOFTNODE, new and enhanced node configurations will provide more advantages over traditional submarine cable architectures both at node level and at system level.”

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