Lucent Technologies of Murray Hill, N.J., demonstrated its WaveStar OpticAir networking system for cable television providers at the Western Cable Show in Los Angeles in December. The laser-based free-space system transmits signals at up to 2.5 Gb/s per wavelength, enabling providers to broadcast high-definition television without optical fiber. The demonstration used Lucent's VideoStar MPEG-2 encoding system to compress and multiplex television signals into standard transport-streams. A LinkRunner-TXA video gateway converted the streams on either side of the transmission system. WaveStar OpticAir will be marketed as a solution to increasing network capacity where laying new fiber is not an option.