What is OpenROADM?2023-04-26T21:00:45+00:00

OpenROADM is a community of network operators and equipment vendors that defines and promotes carrier-focused open API models and optical specifications. This initiative aims to create the specifications for an open optical networking ecosystem that provides network operators with greater flexibility, choice, and control over their optical networks while promoting interoperability, deployment choice, and reducing vendor lock-in.

The OpenROADM networking approach is based on a disaggregated architecture that separates network functions and equipment into smaller, interoperable components. By doing so, network operators can avoid vendor lock-in and choose the best components from multiple vendors for their deployment architecture and performance needs, without being locked into a single vendor’s solution. This open management, disaggregation, and interoperation initiative enables carriers to build the open network of their choice.

Why OpenROADM?2023-04-26T21:06:36+00:00
  • MSA Benefits: OpenROADM MSA is a set of continuously evolving specifications to intersect technology advancements and meet carriers’ network needs.  Weekly carrier/vendor meetings keep a rapid evolution pace.
  • Carrier benefits: OpenROADM provides a collection of open specifications, APIs and methods that can be used by a carrier to architect the openness of their network, simplify integration, tailor performance, and avoid vendor lock-in.
  • Vendor benefits: Common models, specifications and methods broaden the range of networks and systems accessible to OpenROADM vendors.
What does OpenROADM specify?2023-04-26T21:01:52+00:00

OpenROADM is an open-source initiative that defines a set of standard interfaces for building open and interoperable optical transport networks. Specifically, OpenROADM currently specifies:

  • Interoperable open optical interfaces – please see current MSA published device white paper and optical specification for more details:
    • W (Single-Wavelength Interface)
    • Wr (Single-Wavelength Interface for ROADM Add/Drop Ports)
    • MW (Multi-Wavelength Interface)
    • MWi (Multi-Wavelength Interface for ILAs)
    • OSC (Optical Supervisory Channel)
  • Management information models and APIs/RPCs – please see current MSA published Github repository including white papers on device, network and services for more details:
    • Device data model and APIs
    • Network data model and APIs
    • Service data model and APIs

Both the open optical interfaces and management information models are evolving and expanding based on community interest .

How can I use OpenROADM API?2023-05-22T21:24:14+00:00

The OpenROADM API enables software-defined control and management of open networks through three models: device, network, and service. The device model is used as a vendor-neutral framework for managing network elements, while the network and service models offer a generic and vendor-independent approach to managing networks and services.

Once these models are implemented in the network elements and/or the SDN network controller, they provide a standardized and unified management interface, promoting an environment that facilitates interoperability, reduces vendor lock-in, and ultimately decreases the total cost of network ownership.

With the OpenROADM API, network operators gain the flexibility to mix and match components from multiple vendors and manage them through a common interface, enhancing the openness and agility of their optical networks. By embracing open standards and promoting interoperability, the OpenROADM community is driving innovation and transformation in the optical networking industry.

How does OpenROADM influence pluggables?2023-05-22T21:24:33+00:00

One of the main benefits of Open ROADM is that it provides a standard management interface and a standard interop mode for optical modules that can be implemented by modules from different vendors.

This allows network operators to choose the best module for their needs without being locked into a specific vendor’s ecosystem.

Commercially available CFP2 and QSFP-DD pluggable modules support the Open ROADM standard interface and can be used in both Xponders and routers for IP-over-DWDM.

What if I don’t want to mix my ROADM vendors?2023-04-26T21:05:45+00:00

OpenROADM is a collaborative effort aimed at developing an open, disaggregated optical networking ecosystem. Deploying a line system from a single vendor limits the benefits of OpenROADM in terms of openness, reduced vendor lock-in, and lower total cost of network ownership.

On the other hand, a line system from a single vendor can provide advantages such as faster initial setup, and easier integration. This approach may also be preferred if the network operator has specific requirements or constraints that align with a particular vendor’s equipment.

If a network operator chooses not to mix vendors in the L0, they can still benefit from using the open API to manage the network and/or mixing vendors on L1, leveraging the optical specifications and Open API models. By doing so, the network operator can reap some of the benefits of OpenROADM’s open approach while meeting their specific needs.

Open ROADM MSA supports both fully disaggregated and partially disaggregated ROADM solutions.  Partially disaggregated single-vendor ROADM line system may provide better performance than fully disaggregated multi-vendor ROADM network; however, a ROADM network solution supporting fully disaggregated model with multi-vendor inter-op capability offers  a  resilient supply chain ecosystem and the potential for more graceful technology transitions.

Does OpenROADM replace other standards bodies?2023-04-26T21:03:54+00:00

OpenROADM does not aim to replace other standards organizations in the optical networking industry. Instead, it augments their work in areas not already fully covered in any existing standards and contributes to the standards for emerging technologies with open and interoperable solutions.

The ITU, OIF, and IEEE play fundamental roles in defining and promoting standards for the industry, and the OpenROADM MSA actively liaises with these and other standards bodies to share efforts and promote wider recognition of the available standards.

Does OpenROADM settle for the lowest performance to enable interoperation?2023-04-26T21:05:07+00:00

OpenROADM is a standard that enables network operators to use equipment from multiple vendors, while maintaining high levels of performance and reliability. It also supports advanced features and functionality, such as the use of both 16QAM and QPSK modes, which provide an optimal trade-off between optical performance, data rate, and spectral efficiency.

However, interoperability can have an impact on performance, because interoperability requires the use of open source or shared Forward Error Correction (FEC), Probabilistic Constellation Shaping (PCS), and optical power control algorithms, rather than proprietary implementations, which are highly optimized. In addition, certain design and operational techniques that rely on optimized end-to-end control and/or real-time communications may not be feasible with different implementations at both ends.  Open ROADM optical specifications are considered a baseline among different implementations, and the Open ROADM MSA’s work to push this baseline specification helps propagate the best design practices in the industry.

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