Getting plugged in

Agilent Technologies, Nortel Networks and Agere Systems have announced a multi-source agreement for hot-pluggable 2.5 Gbit/sec (OC-48) transceiver modules.

Agilent Technologies, Nortel Networks and Agere Systems have announced a multi-source agreement (MSA) for hot-pluggable 2.5 Gbit/sec (OC-48) transceiver modules used in metro dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) optical networking systems.

The DWDM Pluggable Transceiver MSA establishes a standard that specifies uniformity for 2.5Gb/sec DWDM transceiver package outlines, pin function definitions, software interface and electrical characteristics. Transceivers based on this MSA will provide transmit and receive interfaces for metro DWDM multi-service routers, multi-service provisioning, optical transmission platforms and digital cross-connects.

Agilent, Nortel Networks and Agere will independently develop and market the DWDM transceivers based on the new standard, ensuring that optical systems manufacturers have a choice among compatible sources.

MSA-compliant DWDM transceivers will allow network service providers to plug in a DWDM transceiver exactly when and where it’s needed, and at any wavelength, reducing inventory costs. The ability to install the transceivers into live systems eliminates system downtime during upgrades and service calls. The multi-rate feature (from 155 Mb/sec to 2.7 Gb/sec) allows operators to offer flexible service as well.

Network equipment manufacturers will also benefit from the pluggability feature, as it eliminates cumbersome fibre ‘pigtails’ and pin through-hole devices that are difficult to assemble in high-volume systems. These pluggable transceivers will not require soldering to the board or a board cut-out, further reducing design and manufacturing time. The modules are suitable for both hot-pluggability in the field when mounted at the faceplate of the equipment and for cold-plugging ‘in-board’ when field access is not required. The optical interface will be a standard LC connector.