fiberopticIndiana Fiber Network plans to upgrade its core fiber network to support speeds of 100 Gbps, matching and even exceeding the speeds of networks operated by some of the world’s largest carriers. IFN, operated by 20 local phone companies, provides high-speed transport service to enterprise and carrier customers in rural as well as urban areas of the state.

Plans for the IFN 100 Gbps upgrade include deploying multi-terabit optical switches and reconfigurable optical add-drop multiplexers (ROADMs) that can remotely switch traffic from a wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) system at the wavelength level. The equipment will enable IFN to configure the network to provide a mesh protection scheme.

“The platform upgrade enables IFN to rapidly provision network services that support our customers’ critical applications in a reliable and secure way,” said Darryl Smith, IFN director of operations, in a press release. “We are committed to meeting the expanding service assurance requirements of our customers; maintaining their service quality levels is a key focus.”

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The upgrade will be made in two phases. The first phase will focus on the northern part of the state and the second phase will focus on the southern part of the state. The entire upgrade should be completed by 2016, IFN said.

IFN plans to offer services at speeds up to 100GE on the new network. Until now it has not been possible to get 100GE speeds in many parts of Indiana, IFN said.

Building Partnerships
IFN Vice President of Business Development Rob Ramsey noted in the press release that IFN looks forward to continuing its partnership with Indiana economic development organizations and “developing better relationships with the Indiana rural electric membership corporations and municipal utilities throughout Indiana.” To further that goal, IFN is planning informational webinar about its network expansion.

According to IFN, the organization’s total capital investment in Indiana already exceeds $75 million and will reach more than $100 million in the next five years.

In addition to operating the statewide fiber network and providing nationwide connectivity via partnership agreements, IFN also offers data center services.

IFN isn’t the first regional fiber network operator owned by small telcos to upgrade to 100 Gbps. Dakota Carrier Network also has made that move.

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