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EKINOPS joins the Open ROADM group

EKINOPS (Euronext Paris - FR0011466069 – EKI), a leading supplier of optical transport equipment and router solutions, today announces that it has joined the Open ROADM Multi-Source Agreement (MSA).

Key step towards open and interoperable networks

The purpose of the group is to help build and publish open standards for optical networks building blocks such as ROADMs (Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexers), transponders and in-line amplifiers. Traditionally, these building blocks are proprietary systems built by each vendor. As a result, they are not interoperable and cannot be controlled from a single platform that would allow optical connections end-to-end management in a multi-vendor environment.

The Open ROADM group consists of over 15 members, including major telecom vendors and tier 1 operators such as AT&T and Orange S.A. Its goals are the disaggregation and opening up of the traditionally proprietary optical systems and the SDN-enablement of these building blocks in an effort to create flexibility and software control of the optical layer.

EKINOPS has been selected to be part of the Open ROADM group by the current members committee including major global operator Orange.

“EKINOPS joining Open ROADM is a good sign for us. It confirms their willingness to participate to a leading open initiative which paves the way towards automation, laying the foundations of interoperability in the optical layer. The initiated development efforts give EKINOPS a robust asset to address the market.” said Christian Gacon, vice president, Wireline Networks and Infrastructure at Orange.

This follows the recent demonstration of the Ekinops360 platform’s compatibility with the OpenDaylight-based SDN controller. The proof of concept, led by Orange, successfully exhibited a northbound NETCONF/YANG interface on the Ekinops360 platform implementing the Open ROADM modelling of a legacy equipment. This proved end-to-end optical services spanning different suppliers’ equipment can be automatically provisioned, regardless of them being NETCONF/YANG native. A smooth migration towards further network programmability becomes feasible making pre-deployed equipment compliant with the latest Open ROADM standards.

François Xavier Ollivier, Co-Founder of EKINOPS & COO for optical transport comments: “Interoperability in the optical layer is key to achieve the benefits of automated control. It may not be in the interest of very large vendors to truly endorse such initiative, but for us, joining Open ROADM is a matter of course as we are entirely committed to protect service providers’ investment. Our latest successful proof of concept with Orange is an important achievement in that direction as it proves the ability for legacy equipment to be integrated into an operator’s network that is controlled by an SDN environment.”

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