DIGI OTN Processors: The Industry’s Most Flexible and Comprehensive OTN Payload Encryption

The security of communication lines is a top priority of service providers and data center operators. DIGI OTN processors can enable secured and low-latency WDM transport with the industry’s most flexible and comprehensive OTN payload encryption at wire-speed for protocol-agnostic datacenter interconnect and cloud applications.

The DIGI supports sub-180 ns end-end optical layer encryption and includes the industry’s first sub-wavelength OTN encryption solution. This allows carriers to have flexible business models on how they monetize the encryption capability and make encrypted services compatible with the OTN switched networks that are fast becoming the backbone of optical networks worldwide. These capabilities enable a new class of low-power, high-capacity transport platforms optimized specifically for the hyper-scale data center interconnect market.

OTN encryption between data centers is enabled by DIGI processors in transponder/muxponder applications to ensure the optical data lines leaving the data centers are secure. Service providers and data center operators can add a new OTN encryption-capable line-side card using the DIGI processor into the system and gracefully switch over all the uplink traffic onto the new card.

The DIGI OTN processors integrate CrypOTN, an AES-256 CTR mode OTN payload encryption with GMAC authentication solution that is compliant with the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 197 standard through the Cryptographic Algorithm Validation Program (CAVP). The OTN encryption capability of DIGI OTN processors offer an attractive path for service providers and data center operators to add encryption capabilities on their platforms in order to make the lines secure.

Feature Upgrades

As ECI’s customers’ needs change, it is often necessary to add features to a system that is already deployed in the field. This might include the addition of a new client type, or adding packet switching capabilities to an OTN switching system.

Through ECI software capabilities on the Apollo platform and Microsemi’s software design kit (SDK) and feature flexibility with the DIGI platform (which has a common SDK across all the applications that DIGI enables), it is possible to add new features to systems carrying traffic in the field without causing any hits to the traffic. Interruption of customer traffic, especially for critical infrastructures, must be avoided whenever possible by network providers. Customer Service Level Agreements (SLAs) strictly dictate the amount of dropped traffic in a year, and service providers do not expect to have to interrupt traffic for a software upgrade. Thus, a DIGI-based platform allows ECI to seamlessly stage product releases and to be highly flexible to address customers’ requirements.


ECI and Microsemi have collaborated to deliver innovative optical networking platforms to address today’s OTN challenges in terms of capacity, speed, power, and security. Microsemi’s DIGI OTN processing devices have the feature integration, lowest power per port, and scalability to enable economical deployment of 100G+ packet optical transport networks.

Leveraging multiple generations of field-proven, carrier-grade Microsemi OTN software API libraries, the DIGI OTN processors can be implemented across multiple line-card designs, applications, and equipment platforms to reduce the development costs while accelerating the time to market.

Microsemi’s DIGI OTN processing devices and software API libraries empower ECI to provide its customers with dynamic and resilient network solutions that are future-proof, secure, and flexible to evolve with the changing requirements for speed and bandwidth capacity, thus creating value and competitive edge in operational simplicity, equipment costs, and advanced feature capabilities.

For more information, visit Microsemi’s DIGI multi-service OTN processors products page.

Read the full case study on Optical Transport Networking (OTN) Processors.

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