The Optical Networking and Communication
Conference & Exhibition

San Diego Convention Center,
San Diego, California, USA

Panel I: The Role of “Open Transport” in the New Metro and Inter-Data-Center Architectures

Wednesday, 14 March, 11:00 - 12:30
Theater I

Moderator: Loukas Paraschis, Senior Director, Cloud Transport, Infinera, USA


Panel Description

A significant evolution of Metro Network Transport Architectures is currently underway in most networks operators. In big “cloud” network operators this evolution is due to the transition from ‘Mega Campus’ to ‘Distributed Datacenters’ in multiple Metro locations, as for example Microsoft elaborately discussed in multiple OFC 2017 presentations. In traditional Telco and Cable network operators, the Metro evolution is motivated by new access architectures (PON or remote PHY respectively), services migration, and the adoption of SDN and NFV infrastructure. At the same time, a substantial push for “open transport” architectures, based on “disaggregated” SW and more recently even HW frameworks, has been increasingly adopted by many of these network operators (cloud, cable and telcos). This panel will review the importance of “open transport” technology innovations (hardware and software) in the evolution of different Metro network architectures.


Jamie Gaudette, Microsoft, USA
Robert Howald, Comcast, USA
Andrew Leong, Facebook, USA
Scott Mountford, AT&T, USA
Matt Newland, Google, USA
Farzam Toudeh-Fallah, JPMorgan Chase, USA


Jamie Gaudette, Microsoft, USA
Bio available shortly.

Robert Howald, Comcast, USA

Dr. Howald has over 25 years of technology and executive experience in commercial and military communications systems.  He is Vice President of Network Architecture at Comcast, focused on the evolution of cable systems and services, future network architectures, and emerging broadband technologies.  He held a similar role at ARRIS and the former Motorola Mobility.  Prior to this, Dr. Howald was the Vice President of Engineering at Xytrans, specializing in millimeter wave products for cellular backhaul, homeland security, and people screening.  He was also the Director of Systems Engineering with General Instrument and Motorola’s prior Broadband Communications Systems division.

Dr. Howald has taught graduate courses in communications and wireless systems engineering, has published over 150 papers, and has multiple patents issued and pending. He has a BSEE and MSEE from Villanova University, a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering from Drexel University, and a Master’s of Business Administration (MBA) from DeSales University.

Andrew Leong, Network Manager, Facebook, USA

Andrew leads the Optical Engineering team that is responsible for the design and engineering of Facebook's global Optical Networks.  Prior to this, Andrew worked at a Tier 1 Carrier and was its Chief Design Authority for Optical, Radio and Satellite Networks. Andrew is constantly active in driving industry research and has even achieved a Guinness World Record for the longest optical link.

Scott Mountford, AT&T, USA
Bio available shortly.

Matt Newland, Google, USA

Matthew Newland is part Google's optical engineering team responsible for the design and implementation of Google's global optical networking infrastructure.  In recent years, Matthew has focused on open line system developments, including modular/disaggregated solutions. Matthew has been in the industry over 15 years with experience in network design, operations, and engineering.


Loukas Paraschis, Senior Director, Cloud Transport, Infinera, USA

Loukas (pronounced Lucas) Paraschis is Senior Director for Internet cloud and content providers at Infinera. From 2007 to 2015, Loukas was cisco’s business development manager and then senior technology architect for wireline transport in global service provider, and before (2000-2006) product line manager and technical leader in cisco’s routing and optical networking. He graduated from Stanford University (PhD 1999, MS 1998) where he worked at the Optical Information Systems and Networking Research laboratories, and is OSA Fellow (2011). He has (co)authored more than 100 peer‐reviewed publications, invited, and tutorial presentations, book chapters, and three patents, and has served in many IEEE and OSA leadership positions, including OFC steering committee, JOCN associated editor, and IEEE Photonics Society Distinguished Lecturer (2009). Loukas was born in Athens, Greece, where he completed his undergraduate studies.

Farzam Toudeh-Fallah, Lead Architect, JPMorgan Chase, USA

Farzam Toudeh-Fallah is a Lead Architect and SME in the field of optical networks at JPMorgan Chase. His field of interest includes architecting Large-Scale Data Center Optical Interconnects towards optimum performance and advanced technologies for implementing such infrastructures. He has conducted his advanced academic studies at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in Optical Communication and Detection and has more than 16 years of industry experience along with several publications and patents in the field.

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