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At LightRiver, disaggregation and open optical networking is always a crucial topic. In fact, it’s one of the hottest optical trends in 2021, but it’s taken time to get here.

The concept of open optical networking started with the introduction of the open line system (OLS). It first showed up in hyperscalers and then in communications service providers (CSPs).

The OLS architecture can also be referred to as “partial disaggregation” or “horizontal disaggregation.” OLS are important to CSPs. By disaggregating the terminals and the line, operators realized that they can achieve several major optical networking wins. Between reducing vendor lock-in, lowering capex, and encouraging faster innovation, partial disaggregation is the way to go.

But what are the key considerations for open architectures? Let’s dive in.

  • Openness requires a level of standardization
  • Extensive interoperability testing is crucial before networks are deployed in the field
  • A lack of multi-vendor network design and simulation tools on the market
  • Software-defined networking (SDN) control for an open optical network is a challenge
  • 400G ZR+ has limited interoperability

Looking for more detail? Read more from Light Reading to get the full scoop!

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