Network monitoring innovation drives down the cost of deploying and operating fiber networks

October 17, 2012 // By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Alcatel-Lucent is to save service providers time and cost in maintaining their fiber-optic broadband access networks with the introduction of a Bell Labs breakthrough that provides an easy, fast and affordable method for accurately identifying and pinpointing faults.

The network monitoring solution uses a technique called Optical Time Domain Reflectometry (OTDR). Developed by Bell Labs — it plugs into a network’s existing fiber access nodes and is integrated with the Motive Network Analyzer, Alcatel-Lucent’s remote management system for broadband access networks. This approach — unprecedented in the industry — will provide a comprehensive and continuous view of PON networks, which are used to deliver high-speed broadband services to consumers and businesses.

Outages of fiber-optic networks can severely impact both users and the service providers themselves. Alcatel-Lucent’s embedded OTDR solution addresses this issue both during the rollout of a new network and once it is in service. During the rollout phase it provides remote validation of the quality of fiber installation work. During operations it continuously monitors all lines, pinpoints the location of network problems and reduces the need for field technicians to make multiple visits to a site.

Erik M. Keith, Principal Analyst, Fixed Access Infrastructure at Current Analysis, said: “Technologies such as Alcatel-Lucent’s Embedded OTDR solution are fundamental tools that give service providers a better understanding of what is happening in their fiber access networks. Knowing where a problem occurs allows service providers to send technicians to the right place, speed up problem resolution, and provide customers with a better service experience. As such, this solution is a key enabler for protecting service providers’ fiber assets and revenues.”

To learn more see: Embedded OTDR solution .