ETSI Event Confirms GPON Interoperability

An ETSI Plugtests testing event has significantly advanced industry confidence in the interoperability of Gigabit-capable Passive Optical Networks (GPON). This was the ninth event on the topic and successfully confirmed a “plug and play” interoperability between various vendors’ products.
The event was organized in November by ETSI and the Full Service Access Network Group (FSAN) with support from China Academy of Telecommunications Research (CATR/TMC), France Telecom and Tecnalia, and sponsored by the European Commission. Its focus was on verifying correct implementations of the ITU-T OMCI Implementers’ guide (OMCI is the Optical Network Termination (ONT) Management and Control Interface). The testing was a useful validation of the clarity and consistency of that guide. This gives an assurance that future implementations based on the guide should be “plug and play”.
The event was held at the Foreign Experts Building in Beijing, China, and brought together 14 GPON equipment and integrated circuit device vendors. Using detailed Test Case descriptions provided by FSAN, the event enabled these vendors to run numerous test cases between each other, resulting in 55 test pairing sessions in a period of one week.
However, beyond these pairing sessions that are regularly used at Plugtests events, a new test concept which had been successfully introduced for the first time during the GPON Plugtests™ event in June was applied once again. This was “Blindfold pairing” and was employed to create a more “real world” situation for these particular products. Taking on the role of network operators, independent testing experts configured the Optical Network Termination themselves through the OLT using the OMCI layer without vendor intervention, as will be the case in practice, and then carried out the tests. “Blindfold pairing” permitted a further 52 short pairing test sessions, each lasting a maximum of half an hour, and very effectively confirmed the “plug and play” capabilities of the vendors’ implementations.  This was carried out in the presence of the invited network operators.
The participating vendors were Alcatel-Lucent, Broadcom Corporation, BroadLight, Cambridge Industries, Comtrend, Cortina Systems, Ericsson, Huawei, Motorola, PMC-Sierra, RAD Data Communication, Tecom and ZTE.  All vendors expressed their appreciation of the efficient organization of the event, as well as the support provided by ETSI, CATR/TMC, France Telecom, observers and test tool vendors.
Part of an ongoing series of GPON test events, this latest Plugtests event has brought industry confidence in GPON products to a high level, as observed by Regis Coat (France Telecom), Co-Chair of the FSAN Interoperability Task Group, who said: “The Beijing event showed that plug and play GPON interoperability is now a reality. The OMCI Implementation Study Group (OISG) and the associated OMCI Implementers’ Guide are clearly at the origin of this success. This event was opened to worldwide operators and gave them the opportunity to see in real conditions how an FSAN test event is conducted.”