What Is Liquid Spectrum?
The content on networks today and changing consumption models are shifting requirements for the network. In today’s constantly evolving, on-demand world, the network still needs to scale for massive capacity growth, but it now also needs to be more agile and programmable to better respond and handle unpredictable traffic requirements associated with cloud connectivity and the proliferation of mobile devices.
Liquid Spectrum changes the way optical networks are engineered, operated, and monetized. Now, changes in connectivity patterns and new capacity requests don’t require new hardware and lengthy, manual wavelength planning and deployment cycles.
Ciena’s Liquid Spectrum advanced software applications provide important benefits for operators thoughout the entire photonic network lifecyle:
- Simplified capacity planning while ensuring optimal system performance during the photonic network planning phase
- Fewer manual engineering steps to enable faster service turn-up during the service delivery phase
- Instant visilbity into network efficiency throughout day-to-day operations
For example, operators can mine and use available system margin—which is a changing (or ‘liquid’) variable over the life of the network—to gain optical capacity on demand, improve reach for a specific channel, or increase service availability.
Liquid Spectrum improves visibility, automates processes, and increases network capacity and service availability from any given WDM investment.
Ciena’s Liquid Spectrum solution
Our Liquid Spectrum solution combines highly instrumented, programmable hardware with advanced software applications to help operators extract the most value from their networks, massively scale at lowest cost per bit, and fully monetize their network resources. The implementation uses APIs and standard interfaces to support customers’ requirements for an accessible, open architecture.
Liquid Spectrum is the cumulative value of a series of next-generation optical and software technologies. Elements include:
- WaveLogic™ Ai and WaveLogic 5 coherent optics for tunable capacity—from 100G to 400G and 200G to 800G respectively—in 50G increments
- WaveLogic Photonics, a highly instrumented, flexible grid photonic layer for dynamic re-routing of wavelengths across the network
- Flexible platform architectures, such as those found in our 6500 and Waveserver platforms, for efficient matching of client services to line capacity
- Ciena’s Manage, Control and Plan (MCP) domain controller for unified service and network management, resource control, and planning through a single interface
- Open APIs and modern data models at both hardware and software layers to allow for better real-time network telemetry and measurement
- Liquid Spectrum software applications so operators can get more value from their networks
- Planning Tool Calibrator – Accesses real-time fiber characterization data and feeds it into planning tools to ensure optimal network designs—without relying on the manual link engineering and spreadsheet checking processes in use today
- Bandwidth Optimizer – Simplifies and accelerates wavelength turn-up through real-time monitoring and automation, providing users with optimal capacity, spectral assignment, and equipment needs based on service requirements
- Channel Margin Gauge – Provides operators instant visibility into the efficiency of their networks and lets them know if they can run their deployed optics at higher capacities
- Liquid Restoration – Increases service availability by leveraging existing system margin and flexibly adjusting transport capacity of deployed coherent optics to recover maximum traffic across any available path
- Wave-Line Synchronizer – Automates wavelength provisioning by matching transponder settings to the photonic line, reducing manual provisioning steps and eliminating associated human errors
Liquid Spectrum is designed with an open and disaggregated SW architecture to allow operators to reap the benefits of the solution across the spectrum of technology consumption models, from fully integrated solutions to largely disaggregated configurations where customers can select the Ciena functions they most value.
Liquid Spectrum delivers the following benefits:
- Service agility through a fully programmable and instrumented infrastructure
- Operational simplicity through sophisticated applications that abstract complexity associated with advanced flexible technologies
- Choice in architecture implementation through open APIs and a building block approach
Liquid Spectrum provides a blueprint for a software-defined architecture that is more agile, dynamic, software-driven, and open—to tackle today’s networking challenges and help operators realize the benefits of the Adaptive Network™.
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