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CLEAR lasers double North Island network capacity

Strictly embargoed until 5.30pm, 17 August 2000

CLEAR doubles North Island network capacity using laser technology

CLEAR has instantly doubled the capacity of its North Island network by
employing the latest fibre optical technology in an Australasian first.

The $14 million project also allows CLEAR to quickly and cost-effectively add more capacity - to hundreds of times current capabilities - as demand increases in the future.

CLEAR has used DWDM - dense wavelength division multiplexing - to increase the capacity of the cable network . The technology allows separate wavelengths or channels of data to be joined into one lightstream transmitted on a single optical fibre. The DWDM equipment, which has been supplied by Nortel Networks, is scalable up to 1.6 terabits per second.

Part of the project, which began last October, included laying an extra 250km of fibre optic cable between New Plymouth and Hamilton. The new cable increases CLEAR's network robustness by completing a "self healing" fibre ring through Palmerston North-Wanganui-New Plymouth-Hamilton. If there is a problem in one part of the network, all voice, data and Internet traffic is instantaneously rerouted back around the ring to ensure uninterrupted service.

CLEAR's Customer and Network Services Director, Ken Benson, says the network expansion assists CLEAR to meet the growing demands of its customers, especially for Internet and data products and services.

"Online services use a lot of bandwidth, so CLEAR is moving to ensure that our network continues to provide a reliable, high quality service," he says.

CLEAR is now moving to lay another 300km of fibre optic cable and to also increase capacity to Whangarei, Warkworth, Wellsford, Nelson, Ashburton, Timaru, Oamaru and Dunedin.

The company has invested more than $400 million to date in its network infrastructure and has committed another $120 million to expansion - including the implementation of high-bandwidth wireless LMDS (local multi-point distribution services) technology - this year.

ENDS

For further information contact Rochelle Lockley Communications Manager - Commercial CLEAR Communications Ph: (09) 912 4104 Office Ph: (021) 763 784 Mobile


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