R-OADMs From the Core to the Edge

Market Studies

1394 Market and Technology Study
From the Core to the Edge

Newly Updated for 2010

Overview | Features | TOC | TOF

$3,995 - Print Copy
$4,995 - Single User PDF*
$5,995 - Site Lic. PDF*
$7,995 - Corporate Lic. PDF*

Order Report

* PDF does not include print copy,
more options on next page.


In the eight or so years of previous ROADM history, we have witnessed a continuum of advancing capabilities and technologies in ROADMs. In the last 2-3 years, several companies have introduced products that are edge ROADMs (although the name is only beginning to be standardized) with reduced capabilities and reuse of existing technology on a cost-reduced basis.

Now, the ROADM has become a standard part of long-haul networks — to be included as a matter of course in any new network — and it has become a major update objective for existing networks. They have also become important in metro networks. In addition to the maturity of application, ROADMs have also developed a third generation technology base — the wavelength selective switch (WSS) — that has quickly become the "gold standard." Now the new application that is driving cost savings is the use of low-cost ROADMs at the edge of the network.


Continuing the trend, carriers are now interested in extending that control capability to the ends of the network. The ever-increasing demand for bandwidth at the ends of the network, mostly exemplified by the overwhelming importance of video, makes the extension of network control capabilities inevitable.

This report details where the industry is in beginning the new ROADM revolution from the “Core to the Edge.” This revolution will bring ROADMs to virtually every central office and head-end in the U.S., and in many parts of the world. The forecasts included herein detail that expansion.

Our focus for this report is the edge ROADM. There are forecasts, application sketches, complete vendor coverage, technology discussions, etc. — all aimed at the edge ROADM. While the edge ROADM is our focus, the report also contains a complete update on all aspects of core and metro ROADMs, as well. including forecasts (with component forecast separately provided), application information, full technology discussions, and complete vendor information.

A number of technologies are involved in the ROADM. The report presents several different architectures, with an emphasis on edge ROADMs and WSSs, but also including the switch version and the broadcast version. This report also discusses the latest in developing trends and architectures for ROADMs, including colorless, directionless, contentionless, and gridless. Technologies involved in each approach are described. The vendors associated with the various approaches are identified, and market forecasts are developed on a component/subsystem level as well as on a system level.

There are many applications for the ROADM. The applications of various-degree nodes ("two-degree nodes," for example, have two fiber routes, three-degree have three, etc.) that are common in the network are depicted. As will be noted, some of these applications will have particular use in merging the long-haul networks of the IXCs and the metro networks of the RBOCs. The new application in this report is the network edge.

The main market driver for ROADMs is the desire by the carriers to save operating expenses. The new video thrusts by the major combined RBOCs are a new driver to ROADM deployment. These companies are in the process of deploying nationwide networks to deliver video on their fiber access local networks. ROADMs are the perfect adaptation to control these video distribution services. In addition, the forecasted increase in wavelength services is going to greatly facilitate the deployment of networks based on ROADMs. Finally, the ever-increasing demand for bandwidth by the end user is mandating that ROADMs penetrate the network from core to end.

This report investigates the systems known as reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexers (ROADMs). These devices are currently available in equipment from several major equipment vendors, and have been for about eight years. These products are based on a variety of subsystem technologies that have been developed largely by small startup companies. The main focus of this report (in addition to ROADMs in general) will be on the new application of edge ROADMs. We will also continue our focus from our 2008 ROADM effort on WSS-based ROADMs. Included in this report are the most extensive forecasts for ROADM-related data available. They are all based on a 2015 time horizon, and are on a system as well as component level. The forecasts are provided for U.S. and world bases.

Report Features

  • Comprehensive coverage of ROAM types and development history

    • Coverage of four generations of ROADMs
    • Including WSS and Edge ROADM

  • One of the first reports to ever cover Edge ROADMs — includes application descriptions; quantity, price and market forecasts; vendors; and technologies

  • Authoritative discussion of ROADM applications

  • Description of advantages of ROADMs

  • Identification and discussion of market drivers

  • Full description of the forecasting methodology used in the report

  • Description of underlying technologies of ROADMs

  • Exhaustive listing of vendors — vendors’ lists and discussions, separated into Component Vendors and System Vendors, all highlighting most current products

  • Extensive forecasts for ROADMs:

    • By type
    • By region (USA and world)
    • By system quantities
    • By market dollar volume

  • Extensive forecasts for ROADM components and subassemblies:

    • Components forecasts in same detail as Systems
    • Nine different components included.

  • Report has over 200 pages

  • Report has over 90 figures — drawings, tables, and graphs, all exclusive to this report

  • Extensive Appendixes to provide in-depth understanding of the technology and its antecedents

  • By an author with extensive consulting experience in the field and the author of six other major ROADM reports — Clifford R. Holliday.

  • From the Lightwave Series of consistent, compatible reports on the new Lightwave Network!

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Table of Figures

The Lightwave Network Series of Reports

The Lightwave Network

The Lightwave Series of Reports

General Market Reports

Specific Systems Reports

General Reports on the Network

Executive Summary


This Report

ROADMs Provide SONET-like Control in Optical Networks

Defining ROADMs

Types of ROADMs

Pre-ROADM Approach — OXC-Based Approach to ROADMs

First Generation ROADM  — PLC-Based ROADMs

Colorless vs. Colored Ports

Other Names

Benefits and Problems with PLC ROADMs

Vendors of PLC ROADMs

The Second-Generation ROADM  — Blocker-Based ROADMs

Other Names

Alternative Designs for Blockers

Problems with Blocker-based ROADMs

Vendors of Blocker ROADMs

Third-Generation ROADM — Wavelength Selective Switch (WSS)

Other Names

Vendors of WSS ROADMs

Problems and Benefits of WSS ROADMs

Fourth-Generation ROADMS — Edge ROADM (ER)

Vendors of Edge ROADMs

Summary of ROADM Features by Utilization

Summary of ROADM Types by Generation

Summary of ROADM Description

The advantages of ROADMs

ROADM Applications

Degree-two Node Applications

Typical EDFA (Amplifier) Site Replacement

Degree-three and Multiple-degree Applications

Approaches to the New RBOC-IXC Merged Network Examples

The WSS Solution to Joining Rings

Edge ROADM Applications

New Directions for ROADMS



Advantages of Colorless/Directionless Systems



Questions Remain

Business Case for ROADMs

Opex Savings

Capex Savings

The RBOC-IXC Merger Driver

OAM&P Software

Wavelength Services

IPTV Networks

Vendors of the IPTV Networks




Edge Applications — the New ROADM Driver

Market Forecast

Forecast Methodology

Model for Forecast Core and Metro ROADMs





Assumptions of Model

Model for Forecast — Edge ROADMs

Forecast Update

Background for these forecasts.

General Economic Background

Telecom Economic Background

Possible Positives for Telecom in 2010


Systems — US Forecast


US Market Forecast

Systems — World Forecast

World System Forecast

World Edge Systems Forecast

World Market Forecast


Assumptions for Component Forecasts

Pricing for Components

Components — US Forecast

Blocker US Market Forecast

Mux/Demux US Market Forecast

Tunable Laser US Market Forecast

Tunable Filters US Market Forecast

Switch Points US Forecast

Monitor Points US Market Forecast

WSS Units US Market

Total Components US Market Forecast

Components — Global Forecast

Blockers Global Market Forecast

Mux/Demux Global Market Forecast

Tunable Laser Global Market Forecast

Tunable Filter Global Market Forecast

Switch Points Global Market Forecast

Monitor Points Global Forecast

WSS Units World Market

Components Total Global Forecast

ROADM Vendors

Leading Vendors

Major Contracts

Component/Subassembly Vendors

Component/Subassembly Vendor Listing

AC Photonics, Inc.

Active Optical MEMS, Inc.

Aegis Lightwave, Inc.

Agiltron, Inc.

Alliance Fiber Optic Products

ANdevices (Enablenace Technologies)

AOC Technologies

Auxora, Inc.

Avanex Corporation

Avo Photonics

Capella Photonics

Clarendon Photonics

CoAdna Photonics



Cube Optics AG

DiCon Fiberoptics

DuPont Photonics Technologies

Emit Technology Co. Ltd.

Enablence Technologies

Engana Pty. Ltd. (Optium Corp.)

Fibernett. Co. Ltd.

Finisar Corporation

FOCI Fiber Optic Communications, Inc.

Guangzhou Yongda Optical Comm. Tech. Dev

Hitachi Chemical Co. America Ltd.

Hitachi Cable

Hitachi Metals America, Ltd.

Infineon Technologies

Inplane Photonics, Inc.

Intel Corporation

JDS Uniphase

Kaiser Optical Systems, Inc

Kamelian (Amphotonix Ltd)

Lambda Optical Systems

LightComm Technology

LIGHTCONNECT Inc (NeoPhotonics)

Lightwaves2020 Inc.

Lynx Photonic Networks

Mahi Networks (Meriton) - Xtera

Metconnex (JDSU)


Network Photonics (Not in Operation)


O-Net Communications Ltd.

Oplink Communications, Inc.

Optium Technologies


OpTun Inc. (NEoPhotonics)

Osaki Electric Co., Ltd.

Paxera Corp. (neoPhotonics)


Redfern Optical Components Pty Ltd.

SDO Communications Corp.

Shenzhen Hi-Optel Technology Co. Ltd.

Silicon Light Machines (Cypress Semiconductor)

Sinclair Manufacturing Company


Stratos International, Inc.

TeraXion Inc.

TheFibers Inc.

Topfiber Technology


Valdor Fiber Optics



System Vendors

System Vendor Listing

Adva Optical Networking


Avvio Networks







Huawei Technologies

Mahi Networks (formerly Photuris) — Meriton – Now Xtera

Marconi Corporation plc (Ericsson)

Meriton Networks

Movaz Networks (ADVA)

NEC America Inc.


Nokia Siemens (NSN)


OpVista Inc.


Tropic Networks (Alcatel-Lucent)

Appendix I — ROADMs and Other Switches — A Taxonomy

Switches by Any Other Name

"Switch" Types

Classes of Transparent Optical Switches



WICX (Wavelength Independent Cross-Connect)


TDM Switches


IP Switches


DACS/ROADM Relationship

Drivers to DACS Deployment

ADMs — The Key SONET Functionality


Appendix II — Technologies for ROADMs

Switches and Blocker


Approaches to MEMS

Digital Approach

Analog Approach

One Dimension MEMS

Grating Light Valve (GLV)

Planar Lightwave Circuits

Liquid Crystal

LQ Uses

Fiber Bragg Grating


AWG Devices

Etched Waveguide Devices (Planar Waveguide Devices)

Tunable Lasers

Monitor Points

Technology Summary

Summary of Features by Class

Importance of Tunable Lasers

Developers and Vendors of Tunable Lasers

Tunable Lasers Vendors List


Altitun AB (ADC)


Bookham (New Focus, Inc.)




JDS Uniphase




Pirelli Broadband Systems


Appendix III — Listing of Acronyms

Table of Figures

Figure 1: Lightwave Network
Figure 2: ROADM General Configuration
Figure 3: Fully Switched Approach to OADM
Figure 4: PLC Based ROADM
Figure 5: Detailed 'Blocker' ROADM Architecture
Figure 6: Alternative M-Z Diode-based Broadcast ROADM
Figure 7: WSS Structure
Figure 8: WSS-based ROADM
Figure 9: WSS-based Multi-degree Node Interconnection
Figure 10: Typical Blocker ROADM
Figure 11: WSS Added to Blocker
Figure 12: Summary of ROADM Types by Utilization
Figure 13: Four Generations of ROADMs
Figure 14: Economic Advantages of ROADMs
Figure 15: Three-Amp DWDM System
Figure 16: 3R Intermediate Access Solution
Figure 17: Use of ROADM for Intermediate Site Access
Figure 18: Degree Three Node Example
Figure 19: Joining Two Rings
Figure 20: Using Core Routers in Degree-three Nodes
Figure 21: Using an OXC in a Degree-three Node
Figure 22: Using a ROADM for the Degree-three Node
Figure 23: Using ROADMs for Joining Rings
Figure 24: WSS Approach to Interconnecting Rings
Figure 25: ROADMs across the Network
Figure 26: Example of Edge ROADM Application — Telco
Figure 27: Example of Edge Router used by Cable Company
Figure 28: Forecast for Wavelength Services
Figure 29: IPTV Video Network
Figure 30: ROADM System Unit Forecast — US
Figure 31: US Market — Change in Predominant Type of ROADM over Time
Figure 32: US Edge ROADMs Systems
Figure 33: Price Forecast for ROADMs
Figure 34: ROADMs Market Forecast — US
Figure 35: OADM vs. ROADM Market — US
Figure 36: US ROADM as a Percent of Global Usage
Figure 37: ROADM Systems — Global
Figure 38: World Market — Change in Predominant Type of ROADM over Time
Figure 39: US Portion of World Edge ROADM Market
Figure 40: World Systems — Edge ROADMs
Figure 41: ROADM Market Forecast — Global
Figure 42: US Systems by Type
Figure 43: PLC Version of the ROADM
Figure 44: Broadcast/Blocker Version of the ROADM
Figure 45: WSS Typical for Component Count
Figure 46: Component Count for Each Type of ROADM
Figure 47: Component Price Table
Figure 48: Components — US Units
Figure 49: Blocker US Market Forecast
Figure 50: Mux/Demux US Market Forecast
Figure 51: Tunable Laser US Market Forecast
Figure 52: Tunable Filters US Market Forecast
Figure 53: Switch Points US Market Forecast
Figure 54: US Market — LC Switch Points
Figure 55: US Market — MEMS Switch Points
Figure 56: Monitor Points US Market
Figure 57: US Market — WSS Units
Figure 58: Total Components US Market Forecast
Figure 59: Components Units Global Forecast
Figure 60: Blocker Global Market Forecast
Figure 61: Mux/Demux Market Forecast
Figure 62: Tunable Laser Global Forecast
Figure 63: Tunable Filters Global Market Forecast
Figure 64: Switch Points Global Market Forecast
Figure 65: World LC Switch Point Market
Figure 66: World MEMS Switch Point Market
Figure 67: Monitor Points Global Forecast
Figure 68: World WSS Units Market
Figure 69: Components Total Global Forecast
Figure 70: U-Verse: FiOS ROADM Vendors
Figure 71: Summary Table — Sub-system Vendors
Figure 72: Summary Table — System Vendors
Figure 73: ROADM Concept
Figure 74: Example of FXC Class Fiber-to-Fiber Application
Figure 75: Example of FXC Application at 1310 nm
Figure 76: Example of WSXC Application
Figure 77: Example of WICX Application
Figure 78: SONET ADM
Figure 79: OADM
Figure 80: Improved OADM
Figure 81: OADM with Limited Switching
Figure 82: Detailed PLC ROADMs
Figure 83: Detailed Blocker ROADM
Figure 84: MEMS Layout
Figure 85: Sketch of Two Dimensional MEMS
Figure 86: Sketch of Multi-Dimensional MEMS
Figure 87: 1D MEMS
Figure 88: Sketch of Liquid Crystal Technology
Figure 89: Planar Waveguide Demux
Figure 90, Technologies' Summary
Figure 91: Table of Switch Classes — Summary of Features
Figure 92: Example of Use of Tunable Laser in Transparent OXC