We talked about Texas Lone Star Network (TLSN) about two years ago when they upgraded their network with Cisco ASR 9000 Series routers. Since then the company, a consortium of 40 Rural Telecommunications Carriers in Texas has expanded quickly, growing from 3000 lit miles of fiber to over 6225 miles and now providing services next door in New Mexico. Their Cisco-based IP and DWDM fiber network offers wavelength, Ethernet, and SONET services to its consortium company members, along with national carriers, wireless providers, regional cable TV operators, colleges and the federal government.


With bandwidth forecasts continuing to expand they’ve recently made the leap to 100G, adding Cisco’s coherent nLightTM 100G technology to their existing ROADM-based network. TLSN installed Cisco 40G in the network two years ago.  For TLSN the ability to easily deploy 100G without the need to re-engineer the network or install new fiber is critical to their business. This will support growing customer demand for multiple 10G service on-demand. One service TLSN offers which they call “TLSN Texas Waves®” bundles multiple 10G or 2.5G optical wavelengths together. This solution has been well received as an ideal alternative to service providers faced with the high cost of a dark fiber IRU, maintenance and DWDM electronics. With the coherent optical upgrade they’re now well positioned to offer 40G and 100G wavelengths.

tlsn-network-mapAnother innovation that’s being leveraged at TLSN is our 100G CPAK modular optical module, recognizing the operational savings when compared to other CFP based solutions on the market. We introduced the CPAK earlier this year at OFC/NFOEC to great industry interest because it provided a solution to the power and space problem with existing 100G pluggables. The CPAK module, based on well proven and lower cost CMOS technology is the industry’s most compact and power-efficient 100 gigabits per second (100 G) transceiver technology, reducing space and power requirements by over 70 percent compared with alternative transceiver form factors, such as CFP.  Initially available on the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP 100G coherent transponder, it’s now also being used by the CRS-X, Nexus 7700, and as announced last week as a key component in a 10x100G forwarding line card on the new NCS 6000 along with use on the NCS 4000 and NCS 2000 platforms.

We’re looking forward to checking in again with our friends at TLSN in two more years to how much more they’ve grown!

Brad Seymour, General Manager, Texas Lone Star Network

“Our expanding footprint has been well positioned to take advantage of the rapidly growing Texan economy.  The Cisco coherent DWDM solution has enabled us to flexibly add 100G capacity as needed while leveraging our existing investment in fiber plant and network infrastructure. Plus it’s optimized to minimize physical space and power demands which ultimately impact our bottom line.”

Both Cisco and Mr. Seymour will in attendance at the upcoming Next Generation Optical Networking USA event in Dallas on Oct 7-9.  Mr. Seymour will be speaking about 100G in the Tier 2 & 3 markets on October 8th.

Cisco’s Greg Nehib will discuss the impact of network convergence and is participating in a panel on Software Defined Networks. There is also a pre-conference workshop on optical technologies provided by Cisco on October 7th from 2:30pm to 5:30 pm. Attendees can sign up for this when they register here.