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13 June 2012
PMC-Sierra has announced two Optical Transport Network (OTN) processors for metro networks. Dubbed the HyPHY 20Gflex and HyPHY 10Gflex, the devices are targeted at compact "pizza box" size systems that aggregate residential, enterprise and mobile backhaul traffic, as well as packet-optical and optical transport platforms. 
"OTN has long had a home in the core of the network," said Scott Wakelin, product manager for HyPHY flex at PMC. "But there is a clear march from carriers, led in particular by China, to adopt OTN in the metro, whether layer-zero or layer-one switched."  
Using various market research forecasts, the company expects the global OTN chip market to reach US $600 million (€480 million) in 2015, the bulk being metro.
The HyPHY Flex family is designed to meet those emerging metro requirements. The HyPHY 20Gflex has 16 SFP (up to 5Gbps) and two 10Gbps XFP/SFP+ interfaces, whose streams it can groom using the device's 100Gbps crossconnect. The crossconnect can manipulate streams down to SONET/SDH STS-1/ STM-0 rates and ODU0 (Gigabit Ethernet) OTN channels. 
Both ODU0 and ODUflex channels are supported. Before adding ODU0, a Gigabit Ethernet channel could only sit in a 2.5Gbps (ODU1) container, which wastes half the capacity. Similarly by supporting ODUflex, signals such as video can be mapped into frames made up of increments of 1.25Gbps. "For efficient use of resources from the metro into the core, you need to start at the access," said Wakelin.
The chip also supports the new Optical Internetworking Forum's OTN-over-Packet-Fabric protocol that allows OTN to be switched using packet fabrics. The devices can interface to OTN, SONET/SDH and packet switch fabrics.
The 20Gflex offers 40Gbps of OTN framing and a further 20Gbps of OTN mapping. The OTN mapping is used for those client signals to be fitted into ODU frames. With the additional 40Gbps interfaces that connect to the switch fabric, the total interface throughput is 100Gbps, matching the device's crossconnect capacity.
Other chip features include Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet and 10GbE MACs for carrier Ethernet transport, and support for timing over packet standards, including IEEE 1588v2 over OTN, used to carry mobile backhaul timing information.
The 10Gflex variant has similar functionality to the 20Gflex but with lower throughput.
PMC is now sampling the HyPHY Gflex devices to lead customers.  
By Roy Rubenstein