AT&T pushes Ethernet fibre speeds to 400Gbps between NY and DC

Carrier speeds are set to be quadrupled following a successful trial of live traffic running at 400Gbps between New York City and Washington.

AT&T, working with Viavi Solutions, says it carried Ethernet services at that speed over a commercial system between the two cities carrying live traffic at 100Gbps.

The company’s senior vice president for network product management, Rick Hubbard, said: “Our approach to roll out the next generation of Ethernet speeds is working. We continue to see enormous data growth on our network, fuelled by video. And this will help with that growth.”

AT&T Labs and Viavi have presented their findings at a special session at this week’s Optical Fibre Communications conference in Los Angeles.

The researchers – from Coriant and Finistar as well as from AT&T and Viavi – said: “We demonstrated a 400Gbps Ethernet end-to-end circuit, inclusive of 400GbE client card with CPF8 interface and dual-carrier 16QAM line-side, on a production 100G core network segment between New York City and Washington DC. During the field trial, we demonstrated the feasibility of SDN-enabled creation, deletion, and re-routing of the 400G service.”

The second presentation, which included collaboration from Oclaro and Ixia, said they achieved error free operation and also tested the use of modules from different suppliers.

AT&T said it is moving on to the second phase, a 400GbE end-to-end service transported across its OpenROADM metro network to the customer. “This will show the network is ready for 400GbE to serve customers in metro areas”, said the company.

In the third phase AT&T will test the first instance of a 400GbE open router platform. The so-called “disaggregated router” platform uses merchant silicon and open source software: “another industry first”, claimed the company.