RealTime IT News

Lucent Cuts Two Multi-Million Dollar Deals

Struggling optical equipment maker Lucent Technologies scored two high-profile victories Monday as it cut multi-million dollar deals with TyCom Ltd., the world's largest supplier of transoceanic optical networks, and Germany's Deutsche Telekom.

Under Lucent's one year, $90 million deal with TyCom, the equipment maker will incorporate its WaveStar OLS 800G system with the TyCom Global Network's West Coast routes in the United States and routes in Japan and southern Europe. The routes extend more than 6,000 kilometers (about 3,728 miles), and Lucent said the system should be deployed by third quarter 2002. The deal also includes potential upgrades of more than $50 million.

The OLS 800G system is based on dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) technology, and has a capacity of 800 gigabits per second -- which Lucent said is the equivalent of transmitting 10 million simultaneous phone calls or 160 million one-page e-mail messages every second. Developed at Lucent Bell Labs, the system can be doubled in size to a 1.6T system, capable of transmitting 1.6 terabits of information per second, without disrupting service through the use of an "L-Band" optical amplifier. The amplifier allows network providers to transmit traffic through a previously unused wavelength range in a fiber.

"Our goal is to provision high-quality, high-reliability broadband capacity to our customers, and the WaveStar systems will help make this possible," said Robert Paski, TyCom's vice president of network engineering and operations. "This is another example of a best-in-class product that we're integrating into the TyCom Global Network to ensure the highest levels of service."

Meanwhile, Lucent will also supply Deutsche Telekom AG with 1.5 million kilometers of its single-mode fiber and AllWave fiber in a three-year deal. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The AllWave fiber is designed to accommodate higher capacities as network traffic increases, allowing carriers greater flexibility in metropolitan areas. Lucent said it can transmit 50 percent more wavelengths than conventional fibers.

Lucent's plant in Augsburg, Germany will supply the cables.

"We are pleased to be able to provide Deutsche Telekom the advanced fiber it needs to expand its network service throughout Germany and ensure their customers have access to fast broadband services such as multimedia, Internet or video-on-demand," said Denys Gounot, president of Lucent Technologies Optical Fiber Solutions business.

Murray Hill, N.J.-based Lucent has had a string of troubles lately as it seeks a way to finance its debt. Most recently, talks to be acquired by France's Alcatel fell apart at the last minute. Its subsidiary, optical components maker Agere Systems, has also been feeling the burn. Two weeks ago, Agere cut 25 percent of its workforce and consolidated a number of manufacturing sites and corporate offices.