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November 18, 2002

Media Contact:
   Doug Ramsey, Cal-(IT)², (858) 822-5825 or
   Teresa Fereday, Publicis Dialog, 972.628.7524,
   Kathryn Gonia, Chiaro Networks, 972.739.8088,


SAN DIEGO, CA and RICHARDSON, TX, November 18, 2002 -- The California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology [Cal-(IT)²] and Chiaro Networks, the provider of transforming technologies in a high-end routing platform, today announced a partnership supporting development of the “OptIPuter,” a next-generation optical networking Grid. Chiaro will supply the high-end platform, Enstara™, to the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) OptIPuter testbed and become a Cal-(IT)² industry partner. It joins other institute partners, including IBM, Telcordia Technologies and the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), on the OptIPuter initiative.

The OptIPuter is named for optical networking, Internet Protocol, and computer storage and processing. The powerful distributed cyberinfrastructure project is designed to support data-intensive scientific research and collaboration, especially in earth and biomedical sciences. The convergence of two technologies -- Grid middleware, and multiple wavelengths of light (termed “lambdas”) on single optical fibers -- is leading to the creation of LambdaGrids, which essentially eliminate bandwidth as a barrier to interactive exploration of large remote databases. The project is led by Cal-(IT)² researchers at UCSD, the University of California, Irvine, San Diego State University, and University of Southern California; and researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago with its partner Northwestern University. Major funding for the project comes from a recently announced $13.5 million award from the National Science Foundation.

"We partnered with Chiaro for our LambdaGrid OptIPuter testbed at UCSD because it provides the advantages of traditional routing along with leading edge optical switching technologies,” said Cal-(IT)² Director Larry Smarr, principal investigator on the OptIPuter project and the Harry E. Gruber Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering Department of UCSD’s Jacobs School of Engineering. “It is ideal for our campus switch to link scientific laboratories with the SDSC, given Chiaro’s comprehensive understanding of supercomputing along with telecommunications, networking and photonics.”

“Our high-end routing platform Enstara™ reduces IP network complexity and takes a major leap forward in reducing infrastructure costs," said Steve Wallach, Vice President of Chiaro’s Office of Technology. “Chiaro has created a routing platform that acts like a computer system. It is programmable with 24/7 reliability and virtual partitions, while converging computing and communications. This is exactly what is needed for consolidated networks.”

The OptIPuter will enable scientists who are generating massive amounts of data to interactively correlate, analyze and visualize their data from multiple storage sites connected to optical networks.

"We see Chiaro's Optical Phased Array™ (OPA) technology as potentially having a similar effect on high-performance networking as the original Cray-1 had on supercomputing,” said Philip Papadopoulos, a co-principal investigator on the OptIPuter project and Program Director for Grid and Cluster Computing at SDSC. "Chiaro's optical core can reconfigure light paths very, very quickly because it has no moving parts and instead uses interference patterns to ‘bend’ light to desired destinations. Because of its solid state design, we will be able to experimentally explore where small-sized packet switching enabled by Chiaro’s OPA technology fits with lambda circuit switching in the overall OptIPuter project. This key experimental duality will be a key enabler in exploring the many deep research issues in OptIPuter.”

Chiaro’s Enstara routing platform employs several innovative technologies such as nanosecond optical packet switching, centralized switch fabric scheduling, and the use of programmable network processors. This allows for flexibility in today's networking environment, while reducing the cost normally associated with the complexity of operating multiple, parallel networks.

“The same routing platform can be local- (LAN) and wide-area-network (WAN) enabled,” said Wallach. “One of the objectives of the OptIPuter is to develop protocols that enable more efficient packet processing in a Grid environment, and with OPA technology, OptIPuter researchers will have the option to explore new protocols.”

Enstara can seamlessly integrate 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GigE), OC-192 and future OC-768 interfaces. In addition, the system design incorporates programmable network processors. Access to these network processors allows OptIPuter researchers to test and explore new types of protocols while the network is running applications.

Phase One of the partnership calls for installation of Chiaro’s router to connect SDSC with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research, all three on the UCSD campus, by December 1, 2002.

“We're pleased to be working with Cal-(IT)² to pioneer a new direction in the industry by making computing a cohesive and abundant resource regardless of geographic location,” said Ken Lewis, CEO and President of Chiaro Networks. “We view this as a forward looking first step in the consolidation of computing and communication infrastructures.”

About Chiaro Networks
Chiaro Networks, the provider of an advanced routing platform based on transforming technologies, is headquartered in Richardson, Texas with facilities in Jerusalem, Israel. The company has developed the industry’s first IP routing platform with the goal of solving the “crisis of cost” issues facing service providers by eliminating the typical 18-month replacement cycle for network routers and replacing it with equipment that provides seven years of scalability and reliability. With strong backers in the venture capitalist and technology communities, Chiaro has secured $210 million to date from backers such as Intel Capital, Siemens Ventures, Sevin Rosen Funds, and STAR Ventures. Also, the company boasts a Technology Advisory Board, which consists of business leaders and academics from MIT and Stanford University. For more information, visit the newly designed


Chiaro Networks, Enstara and OPA are registered trademarks of Chiaro Networks. Chiaro Networks disclaims any proprietary interest in the marks and names of others.

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