Harmonic Debuts 'HectoQAM'

Harmonic has introduced the NSG HectoQAM (NSG 9000-40G), the world’s first universal edgeQAM solution to deliver up to 648 QAMs per two-rack unit chassis. The NSG 9000-40G incorporates pioneering new technologies that significantly improve efficiency and ease of operation, including Harmonic’s new EQAM Virtualization software technology and frequency agility for flexible placement of QAMs across the spectrum.

The cost-effective NSG 9000-40G supports video-on-demand (VOD), broadcast, switched digital video (SDV), modular cable modem termination system (M-CMTS), DOCSIS 3.0 and cable IPTV services, providing unparalleled flexibility while lowering operational costs for cable operators. Customer shipments for the NSG 9000-40G are scheduled to begin in September 2010.

“Harmonic’s expertise and commitment to edgeQAM technology innovation has resulted in the introduction of several exciting and unique features with the new NSG 9000-40G solution. Operators can more easily upgrade to an ultra-compact platform thanks to its use of the same form factor as existing NSG systems and its ability to utilize the same network, integrate with the same back-office system, and enable flexible use of available spectrum. Furthermore, with the number of QAMs that can be supported using NSG 9000-40G technology—648 QAMs in 2-RU for 6 MHz networks or 486 for 8 MHz—Harmonic’s new solution offers more than double the density of any other solution available today,” said Yoav Derazon, Senior Manager, Cable Solutions and Strategy for Harmonic.

The system supports up to 36 QAMs per port, a density nearly 10 times greater than most existing edgeQAM deployments. This feature, along with the new frequency agility capability, is critical to support more VOD traffic, SDV and M-CMTS services, and reduces MSOs’ capital and operating expenses by significantly lowering requirements for power, cabling, rack space and cooling.

Harmonic’s new EQAM Virtualization software technology allows a single device to be operated as a number of virtual systems, simplifying management and integration with the cable operator’s existing back-office solution. The NSG 9000-40G’s 10-Gbps interfaces serve up to 40 Gbps input total, and can also function as 1-Gbps links. As a result, MSOs can leverage their existing investment in 1-Gbps IP network equipment, an advantage which is particularly relevant for SDV applications.

The new NSG 9000-40G mainboard and blades are used with the existing NSG 9000 chassis, allowing operators to leverage their existing hardware investment for added OPEX savings. NSG 9000-40G blades are hot-swappable, allowing for ease of management and flexible enhancement of the system without service down-time.

Harmonic’s NSG family of edgeQAMs—the world’s first, introduced in 2000—has resulted in the deployment of more than one million QAMs by cable service providers worldwide, serving more than 50 million cable TV subscribers. The award-winning NSG solutions will be on display at Harmonic’s stand #1.C61 during IBC 2010 in Amsterdam, September 10-14.