Alcatel-Lucent launches Internet core router to address major shifts in global networks


Alcatel-Lucent on Tuesday unveiled a new family of Internet core routers designed to address the major shifts that are happening in global networks. 

The 7950 XRS allows network operators to embrace the rapid adoption of ‘cloud’ applications, the explosion in video traffic and the widespread use of smartphones and tablets and prepare the core of their networks for the next decade of growth.
Representing a new generation of core IP routers, the 7950 XRS is based on a compact, highly efficient system design that is built with the future in mind. The flagship of the family, the 7950 XRS-40, supports 32 terabits per second (Tbps) capacity and 160 100Gigabit Ethernet ports in a single system, which is five times the density of today’s core routers. Using the latest techniques in silicon and system design, the 7950 XRS also slashes power consumption by more than 66 percent compared to typical core routers.
With 100 gigabit per second (100G) links increasingly serving as the foundation of IP transport networks and with 400G and Terabit (1000G) links on the horizon the 7950 XRS accelerates and simplifies core network evolution, helping service providers more easily respond to customer demand. This unprecedented combination of capacity, efficiency and scale can significantly improve the economics of operating and expanding core IP networks.
“With the 7950 XRS we are revolutionizing the network core, just as we did over the past ten years at the network edge with service routing. Core networks are evolving at an unbelievable pace, with IP backbones and ‘metro’ cores facing a host of new requirements”, said Basil Alwan, President of Alcatel-Lucent’s IP Division.
Traditional core routers have lacked performance and 100GE density, while recent alternatives have compromised on features and flexibility in an attempt to improve performance and density.  Using the Alcatel-Lucent designedFP3 network processor unit (NPU) the industry’s first and only 400G NPU the 7950 XRS eliminates this tradeoff between capacity and capability. The 7950 XRS has the versatility to support the distinct requirements of both IP backbone networks, which move vast amounts of Internet content around the world, and regional ‘metro’ core networks, where content is increasingly distributed for fast, efficient delivery to consumers and businesses.
“The core router platform of the future needs to be able to efficiently deliver enormous capacity, and do so without sacrificing the intelligence and capabilities needed to support an expanding variety of content and applications. With the 7950 XRS family, service providers need not compromise on any of these dimensions,” Alwan added.
The 7950 XRS also extends Alcatel-Lucent’s commitment to tighter integration between IP networks and optical transport networks. This includes support for transponder integration into the 7950 XRS at 10G, 40G and 100G speeds, efficient grooming of traffic from the IP layer into the optical transport network, common management with the industry leading 5620 Service Aware Manager (SAM) platform and an Optical Extension Shelf capability that integrates the 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) with the 7950 XRS.