SCTE•ISBE Standards Program 'Minds The Gap,' Creates Generic Access Platform Working Group to Promote Technical Innovation

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AUG. 6, 2018 (Exton, PA)—The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) and its global arm, the International Society of Broadband Experts (ISBE), today announced creation of a Generic Access Platform (GAP) project within SCTE•ISBE Standards. The project will be conducted within the Interface Practices Subcommittee (IPS) and is intended to expedite product innovation by developing a common framework for interfaces within node housings.

Within the scope of the GAP project, IPS will develop standardized physical, thermal, mechanical and electrical interfaces for node housings or families of node housings. The goal is to enable technology partners to devote resources to technology innovation that brings value to cable system operators, instead of expending time and effort on re-developing housings for each new generation of outside plant access equipment.

The GAP project is being chaired by two engineers from Charter Communications: Kevin Kwasny, Principal Engineer II–OSP, Advanced Engineering, and Roger Stafford, Principal Engineer III, Network and Premise Engineering. Members of the working group include representatives of Charter Communications, Cox Communications, Liberty Global, and Shaw Communications as well as a wide range of vendors. At least five vendor companies have joined the SCTE•ISBE Standards Program so they can participate in the GAP project.

“Solutions that optimize flexibility, agility and scalability are essential to achieving service velocity for the deployment of innovative technologies,” said Matt Petersen, Vice President, Access Architecture for Charter. “The Generic Access Platform is intended to create an improved operational environment in which any module that is compliant with the GAP specification will be able to coexist with other GAP-compliant modules that are physically able to be installed in a GAP-compliant housing.”

“The GAP program builds on earlier concepts in interface standardization,” said Dean Stoneback, senior director, engineering and standards for SCTE•ISBE. “The goal of the working group is to improve time to market and total cost of ownership for all types of HFC solutions, including DOCSIS, Wi-Fi, PON, 5G and business services.”

The inaugural meeting of the GAP project was conducted on March 14. The group currently meets every two weeks and is reviewing presentations by various proponents on subjects including functional specifications, interop testing, alternative materials, thermal modeling, housing designs, and system requirements.

The SCTE•ISBE Standards Program is the only ANSI-accredited forum for the development of technical specifications supporting cable telecommunications. Standards work includes: Internet of Things; data and telephony over cable; application platform development; digital video; emergency alert systems; network monitoring systems; cables, connectors and amplifiers; construction and maintenance practices; energy management; and other areas of interest.

Corporate membership in the program is open to any organization in the cable telecommunications industry. Member organizations develop standards and recommended practices through their technical representatives who serve on committees and subcommittees. The program currently has a long-term outlook of advancing new standards programs such as Internet of Things and energy management over the next several years.

Complete information about the SCTE•ISBE Standards Program—including how to become involved as an SCTE•ISBE Standards Program member—is available in the Standards section of the SCTE•ISBE website at www.scte.org/standards or by e-mailing standards@scte.org.

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