The Intelligent Network: Dynamically Managing Bandwidth At The Optical Level (2005)

By Gaylord A. Hart, Steven Robinson

CATV network bandwidth requirements are evolving at a rapid pace, driven by deployment of new services, increasing penetration of existing services, and the ongoing transition from analog to digital services. As services migrate to IP based and on-demand content delivery, bandwidth requirements vary dynamically in real time, and a minimum QoS is required to ensure adequate service performance. All of these place stringent requirements on the network.

Managing evolving & dynamic bandwidth requirements is complex, but emerging reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexers (ROADMs) allow transport bandwidth to be managed effectively at the optical layer. Moreover, ROADMs enable fully automated optical transport systems which eliminate design and cut-over errors, accelerate service delivery, and lower network costs. This paper explores evolving services, optical transport technologies, and bandwidth management mechanisms in the context of migrating to an all-digital, IP based network that lowers both CapEx and OpEx costs.

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