Increased bandwidth and faster internet speeds – these are two pressing needs common to enterprises and education, healthcare and government organizations across Pennsylvania. For their IT teams, the need to connect geographically-dispersed branches seamlessly across a Wide Area Network (WAN) is also paramount. As many organizations in this state look to digitally transform their operations and networks, turning to their various network providers to provide them with either the network infrastructure or services they need, we thought it would be helpful to list out the top three products and services we see as vital to supporting network operators and administrators in digitally transforming their daily operations.
1. Tunable Optical Transceivers
Modern network operators need to do more with what they have. Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) is transforming fiber optic networks because it allows data of different wavelengths originating from different sources to share a single optical fiber. For network operators to deploy DWDM in a cost-effective manner, however, tunable transceivers are becoming a necessity.
While static transceivers still have a purpose for specific networking needs, it is important to remember that the number of wavelengths being used in DWDM-capable networks can number well into the hundreds. As a result, relying solely on fixed wavelength transceivers is a recipe for high operating costs. That’s because operators must deploy a large amount of equipment while keeping backup transceivers in stock to ensure uptime.
Tunable transceivers, on the other hand, give network administrators the flexibility and affordability they need to leverage the full potential of their fiber optic infrastructure without requiring massive backup inventories. For our part, Precision OT offers tunable transceivers and our TN100-series tuning boxes that can adjust to any of the standard ITU C-band 50GHz or 100GHz-spaced channels.
2. Mux/Demux Devices
Speaking of DWDM, network operators can not only benefit from tunable transceivers but also from robust, reliable multiplexer and de-multiplexer devices. Briefly, multiplexers allow operators to take multiple incoming optical signals, assign them wavelengths and then transmit them over a single fiber. On the receiving end, de-multiplexers have the inverse effect; they work to split a multiplexer’s multi-wavelength signal back into individual signals for transmission across multiple fibers.
Together, mux/demux equipment enables administrators to increase the carrying capacity of their existing fiber without having to incur the high capital costs of investing in additional fiber cables. Here at Precision OT, we see these tools working virtually hand-in-glove with tunable transceivers to provide Pennsylvanian organizations with an efficient way of transmitting data over distance.
3. SD-WAN Network Analytics Applications
Carrying on with the theme of distance, a growing number of Pennsylvanian establishments have multiple branches spread across different counties. Here, Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) technology enables them to improve the efficiency and reliability of their networks in a simple and scalable manner.
Yet, while SD-WAN technology is often conceptualized in terms of overall network control, it can also be leveraged from an analytics angle for improving uptime. In fact, the data generated by a network’s optical devices – including transceivers, optical channel monitors, amplifiers and time-domain reflectors – is incredibly important in addressing anomalies before they turn into errors that can affect normal operations. We recently wrote at length on this subject in the spring edition of Optical Connections Magazine. SDN applications for network analytics will be a crucial tool in supporting the health and uptime of modern networks for organizations across Pennsylvania. You can also find out more about our machine-learning powered SDN analytics application, Lightseer®, here.
So, what are your top picks for the equipment vital to support Pennsylvania’s digitally-transforming educational, healthcare, government and enterprise sectors? If you are attending KINBERCON 2019, reach out to us to schedule a meeting. We’d love to talk about your needs and how we can best support them!