Tunable FTTH Receiver Offers Low-Cost Upgrade Path for GPON

  • Aegis Lightwave
  • Next-Generation PON
WOBURN, MA -- Plans for upgrading GPON networks to accommodate future bandwidth demands have focused on 10GPON, which splits optical signals through time-division multiplexing much as GPON does now, and WDM-PON, which dedicates a separate wavelength for each subscriber. Now Aegis Lightwave has come up with a third approach - a wavelength-tunable receiver for wavelength-agile passive optical networks. Aegis Lightwave is demonstrating the new device at OFC/NFOEC 2010.

Aegis's wavelength-tunable receivers will enable wavelength-agile optical network terminals (ONTs) at the customer premises to receive four different laser wavelengths, each transmitting to the GPON standard. Service providers can add these laser wavelengths incrementally, lowering their initial capital expenditures. Service providers can also dedicate wavelengths to high-bandwidth subscribers. Each wavelength operates over the existing PON infrastructure at a bit rate of 2.5 Gbps for a total aggregate downstream bandwidth of 10 Gbps, or four times the downstream bandwidth of currently deployed GPON and GEPON systems. The company says wavelength-agile ONTs will eliminate latencies at the edges of the communications network and significantly improve user experience on the Internet.

“Optical reconfigurability and dense wavelength division multiplexing are ubiquitous features of today’s core optical networks,” says Jeffrey Farmer, president and CEO of Aegis Lightwave. “Our tunable filters extend such wavelength-selective applications to the edge of the passive optical network to allow service providers to multiply their downstream bandwidth at a very low incremental cost.”

Wavelength-tunable filters are manufactured by Aegis Lightwave using mature semiconductor processes. Aegis tunable filters are already extensively deployed in fiber optic communications networks for optical channel monitoring applications throughout the world; this is their first proposed application in FTTH networks.

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