Lucent last week broadened its circuit-to-packet migration offerings with a switch and components designed to let service providers evolve Class 5 networks to IP.Lucent\u00a0last week broadened its circuit-to-packet migration offerings with a switch and components designed to let service providers evolve Class 5 networks to IP.Lucent\u2019s\u00a05E-XC switch for its 5ESS circuit switches\u00a0nearly triples the capacity of the Class 5 system while requiring less floor space. The switch features the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), which lets the 5ESS support new services and existing telephony services, Lucent says.The 5E-XC supports up to 256,000 trunks, compared with 92,000 trunks on a 5ESS switch. The 5E-XC can save service providers up to 50% annually on the total cost of owning a switch, including office space, power, cooling, installation, maintenance and software-upgrade costs, Lucent says.The switch can be deployed as a stand-alone system, or its components can serve as incremental adjuncts or upgrades to a 5ESS. These components include:\u2022 A communications module, combined with new software, that can enable a nearly threefold increase in capacity with one-twelfth the space and one-tenth the power.\u2022 An optical interface unit that, at 120,000 trunks, enables a tenfold increase in the number of trunks per cabinet or rack.\u2022 A signaling platform that uses 40% less power and supports larger call volumes.\u2022 Switch software (5E16.2) that features call-forwarding to five different numbers simultaneously and a Centrex call-transfer feature that identifies the person initiating the call rather than the person transferring the call. 5E16.2 can be enhanced through software downloads at a savings of 75% over previous software upgrade options, Lucent says.SBC Communications\u00a0is deploying the 5E-XC in its local network to interconnect with wireless and long-distance carriers in an access tandem switch application. SBC also offers an IP Centrex service based on Lucent gear.All 5E-XC components are available now. An IP card that runs the SIP software is scheduled to be available in the fourth quarter of next year.