Telia and Coriant complete real-time optical awareness trials

13 March 2018 | Natalie Bannerman


Telia and Coriant have successfully completed a live field trial of technology optimised for real-time optical performance awareness and dynamic provisioning of fibre-optic capacity.

The trial took place last month on a live fibre route in Telia Carrier’s backbone network between Hamburg and Prague.

Mattias Fridström 200 x 200Speaking exclusively to Capacity about the announcement and explaining the significance of the trials, Mattias Fridström, chief evangelist at Telia Carrier said: The optical world has been so fantastically manual and everyone is looking for ways to become less manual and more automated. So what we’ve done here with Coriant is start to create some kind of automation on the network. By using the equipment Coriant has to do the calculations we already do but in an automated way, everything that is calculated on the system and measured is done for you automatically. It means we can do a lot more things remotely, we can things a lot faster and in a lot more reliable way.”

Adding to Fridström’s explanation, Uwe Fischer, executive vice president of R&D and PLM, and CTO at Coriant said: “By doing this trial not only are we enabling neutral, real-time network automation but we’re also able to do trend analysis. We’re able to predict how the system will be in the future looking at the data from the network and this allows for proactive action to be taken.”

The trial demonstrated enhanced end-user service reliability and improved operational efficiencies using innovations in online service planning, in-service optical margin measurement and real-time health check analytics. 200G wavelengths were provisioned on-demand during the trial, based on the real-time visibility of residual margin and Optical Signal to Noise Ratio (OSNR) along the transmission route.

“Delivering the best user experience at the lowest network cost remains one of the most pressing challenges for our customers. This trial validates the progress we have made in delivering software-enabled tools that help network operators increase profitability through monetisation of dynamic optical networks and the ability to adapt to changing customer needs in real-time,” added Fischer.

The trial was powered by Coriant Aware technology and CloudWave optics and successfully demonstrated in-service optical margin measurement without the need for additional equipment. The two parties say that by correctly assessing residual margin it can enable higher throughput, policy based margin assignments and preventive maintenance.

“We were very pleased with the results of this trial, which proved out the operational value of optical performance awareness based on accurate residual margin measurement during real-time operations and state-of-life fibre conditions,” said Fridström.

Fridström describes the use of residual margin as the built-in extra capacity on networks that acts almost as a buffer in case the network performs unpredictably.

Uwe Fischer 200 x 200“Before you would have to calculate margins for the system manually and for every eventuality because you didn’t know how the system was going to perform over time, now we know the everyday margins of the system because we able to monitor it in real-time we are able to put traffic on our systems and use the capacity on the system more efficiently.” In addition, Fischer says that this unused residual margin can be monetised and it presents itself as a new business opportunity.

The two say that the biggest challenge from the trials aside from the technical aspects of the implementing the technology was the fact that it was tested on Telia’s live network so it could have real world consequences if anything went wrong. But as Fridström said: “if we never test it we will never know.”

With the trials now a success the next step for Telia, according to Fridström, is to start using the technology and have it deployed to the entire network.

As for Coriant, Fischer said the company wants to look into other areas where it can automate in a similar fashion adding “we need to find additional use cases for this technology.”