Vodafone successfully completed a live network test in Spain with the Facebook-designed Voyager optical whitebox as part of its work with the Telecom Infra Project (TIP). An increased demand for data leads to the need for a more scalable and cost-effective infrastructure. In order to solve this challenge, telecom operators need a combination of connectivity, scalable and cost-effective fiber-optic infrastructure.

Facebook developed a new open-system approach, Open Packet DWDM, which uses combined package and DWDM technology for metro and long-distance optical transport networks. It allows separation of software and hardware and is based on open specifications, so that every supplier of package or DWDM systems, components or software can contribute. Open Package DWDM was introduced by Facebook at TIP, an open source hardware consortium, and was used to develop the Voyager transponder platform.

The goal of the live test was to demonstrate the future of applying a disaggregated model to optical networks and to provide more flexibility for processing the real-time scenarios using Voyager, in combination with a software-defined network (SDN) controller.

With the help of Voyager in combination with a network operating system developed by Cumulus Networks, the network orchestration of NetOS® from Zeetta Networks and with the support of ADVA as one of the architects of the platform, the test demonstrated how Voyager can be implemented via a existing optical infrastructure, a capacity of 800 Gbit / s per rack unit and thanks to SDN, dynamically adjust the system modulation as the fiber conditions change.

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