12 Mar 2014

NBN Co and Coriant trials Terabit super-channel in Australia

NBN Co and Coriant has announced the successful completion of a one Terabit per second (Tbps) super-channel transmission trial over a 1,066 km fibre optic ring in South East Queensland, Australia using Coriant's innovative FlexiGrid technology on NBNCo's Transit Network.

The National Broadband Network is a wholesale only, open access communications network that delivers very fast broadband and telephony services across Australia.

NBN Co's Transit network is built using established optical fibre made available by third party carriers on long term leases and Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing Equipment that provides connectivity from the access networks, including fibre and wireless, through to points of interconnect with NBN Co's wholesale customers.

The field trial was conducted on NBN Co's network using commercially available hardware and pre-commercial software, over the existing fibre that is currently being integrated into NBN Co's Transit Network.

The trial demonstrated a Tbps super-channel transmission in a 369GHz grid over 1,066 km. It showed a greater than 35 percent improvement in spectral efficiency which significantly increases the capacity of the system.

The trial also demonstrated the flexible allocation of the super-channel by placing it in three separate locations within the c-band which maximizes use of existing fibre resources.

This capability, in conjunction with the improvements in spectral efficiency, provides a maximum theoretical transmission capacity of 13 Tbps on existing hardware and fibre over a distance greater than 1,000 km.

The analysis of the results from the trial in conjunction with equipment test results showed that a calculated distance of 1,600 km could be achieved.

Gary McLaren, NBN Co's Chief Technology Officer said, "We are pleased with the results of the trial with Coriant over our Transit Network. It highlights how established backbone infrastructure can be upgraded with sophisticated optical and electronic equipment to provide extra capacity for the future needs of the National Broadband Network."

"This proof point highlights that the existing transit network is robust and capable, as we rollout a mixture of Fibre-to-the-node technologies (FTTx) being designed to provide access to voice and broadband services faster, cheaper and more efficiently to Australian homes and businesses no matter their location across the country," he added.

Using commercial-grade Coriant hiT 7300 DWDM system hardware, including innovative FlexiGrid technology, the trial demonstrated NBN Co's ability to efficiently scale its network as end-user traffic demands in Australia increase.

FlexiGrid technology is based on an adaptive channel grid with wavelengths dynamically selected based on the data rate. By increasing channel density, FlexiGrid technology enables NBN Co to maximize the use of the existing fibre optic infrastructure, while maintaining network flexibility, resiliency and performance.

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