In our latest 'Viewpoint' we take a look at the world of MSAN's - Multi Service Access Nodes and the expanding solutions from Lanode and our partner, Keymile, but let's start by providing a definition for MSAN's - Multi Service Access Nodes which are network devices that provide the boundary between customer interfaces and the transport network. Before MSAN's were developed a telecommunications operator would have had one piece of hardware dedicated to delivery of a particular service offering. For example :-

  • A telephone switch for voice services.
  • IP-DSLAM for Internet services.
  • PDH Multiplexer for digital leased lines.
  • ATM / SDH Switch or multiplexer for the back-haul of traffic.

Each of the above service offerings would have required its owns rack space, power supply and cabling as well as potentially a different skill set for each offering in terms of configuration, operation and management. This is a costly model. Each service requires it's own dedicated hardware, software, OAM and skills to function. The overall result being increased CAPEX and OPEX.

MSAN's overcome many of these service limitations by integrating multiple network functions into a single platform. Customer facing services such as traditional voice, DSL and leased line services can be provisioned as well as new emerging IP based services such as optical Ethernet, VoIP and 'Video on Demand', all delivered from the same hardware.

MSAN's can:

  • provide traditional TDM based functions such as Add / Drop and channel back facilities.
  • act as high speed layer 2 and layer 3 switches.
  • provide CESoIP services enabling the transport of legacy TDM interfaces over IP.
  • provide back-haul of customer traffic towards the core of the network. Traditionally this has been achieved over SDH but modern MSAN's can provide pure packet back-haul too.

A real benefit of using MSAN's is to reduce CAPEX and OPEX by combining service offerings into a single piece of equipment, using a standard power source with a standard cable set in a relatively small footprint. Configuration, operation and management of all services can be achieved via a common set of tools aiding fault finding and new service provision.

MSAN's continue to evolve. Along with our partner KEYMILE, we are now focusing on two complimentary paths:

Broadband Systems: The requirements of a modern telecommunications network are many and varied. Whether you are providing legacy telephony, business services or Triple Play – the KEYMILE IP-based multi-service access platform MileGate supports you. Combining carrier-grade broadband access, telephony and data interfaces in a single compact Next Generation access platform with powerful IP-DSLAM functionality. Implement a Fibre-to-the-x network architecture (FTTx) and offer your customers services at over 1000 Mbps. Over a variety of interfaces, from legacy data services up to Gigabit Ethernet, one NGN platform enables you to migrate your network infrastructure smoothly and promptly to an All-IP network infrastructure. Compact sub-racks and the high port-density guarantee for maximum efficiency in minimum space.

Mission-Critical Systems: We and our partner KEYMILE define Mission-Critical Systems (MCS) as dedicated network infrastructures that carry critical applications for HV/MV Energy & Distribution Grids, Gas & Oil Pipelines, National/Urban Railways, High-speed Railway Lines, Homeland Security, Public Safety, Air Traffic Management & Control communications. We and KEYMILE believe that nothing is more important in MCS networks than guaranteeing the highest availability of each connection. With mission-critical data, downtime can mean risk to life and limb. The XMC20 is a Full Hybrid Multi-service Access & Transport Platform for Communications Networks in Mission-Critical Systems, developed and produced by our partner KEYMILE stand apart due to their extreme reliability. From the outset, KEYMILE developers in Germany and Switzerland have placed the highest priority on achieving this goal. Key attributes were confirmed during the developmental phase of the German manufactured systems. These included top availability, maximum service life, ease of operation, straightforward maintenance, a good eco footprint, as well as being thoroughly future-proof in nature.

You can learn more about MSAN's and our products here and in our next Product Spotlight.