Cisco ASR 9900 Series Route Processor RP3-X

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Updated:July 20, 2022

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The Cisco® ASR 9900 Route Processor 3-X (ASR 9900 RP3-X) is the latest generation system processor for the Cisco ASR 9912 Router and ASR 9922 Router, supporting high-density 100 and 400 Gigabit Ethernet line cards and provides backward compatibility with the Cisco ASR 9000 Series third and fourth generation family of line cards. The Cisco ASR 9900 RP3-X system architecture is designed to accommodate new programmable deployment models and convergence of Layer 2 and Layer 3 services, as required by today’s wireline, Data-Center-Interconnect (DCI), mobile transport and 5G applications.

The ASR 9900 RP3-X brings the time-tested and robust carrier-class capabilities of Cisco IOS® XR Software to the Carrier Ethernet edge. The operating system supports true software process modularity, and it allows each process to run in separate protected memory, including each routing protocol, along with multiple instances of control, data, and management planes supported. The software also supports distributed route processing.

Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor RP3-X – SE, Premium

Figure 1.            

Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor RP3-X – SE, Premium

Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor RP3-X – TR, Premium

Figure 2.            

Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor RP3-X – TR, Premium

The Cisco ASR 9900 RP3-X is designed to deliver the high scalability, performance, and fast convergence required for today’s and tomorrow’s demanding video, cloud, and mobile services. These features provide exceptional scale, service flexibility, and high availability:

      Switch fabric architecture along with Cisco ASR 9900 Fabric Cards:

    Distributed switch fabric architecture

    Control of up to seven Cisco ASR 9900 Switch Fabric Cards to provide scalability and high availability on Cisco ASR 9922 Router and ASR 9912 Router chassis

    Multistage low-latency nonblocking architecture

    Service intelligence and traffic prioritization

      Superior network timing capabilities with support for:

    Global Positioning System (GPS) via Time of Day (ToD), 10-MHz and 1-PPS interfaces

    Building Integrated Timing Supply (BITS) interfaces

    Precision Time Protocol (PTP), or IEEE 1588-2008, through dedicated 10/1-Gbps Optical port

    G.8273.2 Boundary Clock Class C

Route-Processor types

The Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor is available in service-edge-optimized and packet-transport-optimized models. The service-edge-optimized version offers higher amount of memory that is essential for large-scale comprehensive service deployment. Both versions of the route processor support service-optimized, as well as transport-optimized, line cards. Different line cards can be mixed on the same chassis for greater flexibility.

Features and benefits of the ASR 9900 RP3-X are listed in Table 1.

Table 1.        Features and Benefits of ASR 9900 RP3-X in XR 7.6.2 or Later



Highly scalable fabric

  Designed to support high 1-, 10-, 25- 40- 100- and 400-Gbps port densities
  Provides built-in scalability for investment protection

Control of up to seven switch fabric cards

Offers traffic load balancing simultaneously across up to seven fabrics

Distributed-forwarding-plane architecture

Allows line cards to support independent forwarding for enhanced performance and scale

Memoryless switch fabric

Provides transparent nonblocking, low-latency packet forwarding

Virtual output queuing and arbitration

  Offers service intelligence with prioritization of traffic (unicast and multicast)
  Provides efficient congestion-management mechanism and avoids problems related to head-of-line blocking

Centralized arbiter

Uses an efficient credit mechanism to help ensure transparent switchover with zero packet loss

IEEE 1588 support

Delivers timing services over the packet network efficiently and reliably. Provides dedicated 1588 10/1G optical port.

G.8273.2 Boundary Clock Class C support

Delivers better timing accuracy for 5G mobile networks.

Two independent clock source connections: BITS ports

Offers redundant, centralized network synchronization support

Two 128-GB Solid-State Drives (SSDs)

Allows storing of core dumps and helps reduce the system Mean Time To Repair (MTTR)

Embedded Universal Series Bus (eUSB) memory port

Provides access to onboard Universal Serial Bus (USB) flash-memory devices for software image storing and upgrades

Front-panel external USB 2.0 port

Provides access to USB flash-memory devices for quick software image loading and recovery

Front-panel LEDs

Provides visual indication of route-processor status (active or standby), power management, and activity on SSD

Management ports

Provides easy access to system console


8 cores, 2.7 GHz

Table 2 lists all the hardware available for the ASR 9900 RP3-X.

Table 2.        ASR 9900 RP3-X Hardware

Product number

Product description


ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Packet Transport - Premium


ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Service Edge - Premium

Table 3 lists the technical specifications for the ASR 9900 RP3.

Table 3.        Technical Specifications for ASR 9900 RP3-X Hardware

Technical specifications

Internal Memory

  Control of up to seven Cisco ASR 9900 switch fabric cards
  ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Packet Transport (product number: A99-RP3-X-TR): 24GB Error-Correcting Code (ECC)-protected DRAM
  ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Service Edge (product number: A99-RP3-X-SE): 48GB ECC-protected DRAM
  Solid-state drive: Two 128GB SSDs
  8GB embedded USB
  USB 2.0 Type A receptacle

Timing System

  Timing: Two independent clock-source connections (BITS)
  IEEE 1588 PTP 10/1G optical port


  ToD (RS-422)
  1-pps RS-422 or 1.0/2.3 50-ohm RF connector
  10-MHz in/out 1.0/2.3 50-ohm RF connector


  Two 100/1000BASE-T (RJ-45) LAN management ports
  One console port
  One auxiliary port


  Alarm outputs: Critical alarm (CR), Major alarm (MJ), and Minor alarm (MN)


  Amber Alarm Cutoff (ACO) and lamp test
  System Synchronization alarm (SYNC)
  Global Positioning System (GPS)
  Fabric-card fault indicator


The Cisco ASR 9000 Series Aggregation Services Router delivers superior scale, service flexibility, and high availability into access and aggregation networks. It is powered by Cisco IOS XR Software, an innovative self-healing, distributed operating system designed for always-on operation. Cisco IOS XR Software supports a Software-Maintenance-Update (SMU) capability, which allows bug fixing or even small feature releasing without interrupting existing services. It also supports Field-Programmable Device (FPD) upgrades, which can be used to update Field-Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) and more, while systems are running.

Cisco ASR 9000 Series Carrier Ethernet applications include business services such as Layer 2 VPN (L2VPN) and Layer 3 VPN (L3VPN), Internet Protocol Television (IPTV), Content-Delivery Networks (CDNs), and mobile backhaul transport networks. Features supported include Ethernet Services; L2VPN; IPv4, IPv6, and L3VPN; Layer 2 and Layer 3 Multicast; IP over Dense Wavelength-Division Multiplexing (IPoDWDM); SyncE; PTP, Ethernet Operations, Administration, and Management (EOAM) and Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) Operations, Administration, and Management (OAM); Layer 2 and Layer 3 Access Control Lists (ACLs); Hierarchical Quality of Service (H-QoS); Segment Routing (SR), Segment Routing v6 (SRv6), RSVP- and SR-Traffic Engineering; TI-LFA and RSVP-based FRR; EVPN; Multichassis Link Aggregation (MC-LAG); Integrated Routing and Bridging (IRB); Cisco Nonstop Forwarding (NSF) and Nonstop Routing (NSR); Point-to-Multipoint Traffic Engineering (P2MP-TE); and mLDP; Lawful Intercept; Smart Call Home (SCH).

The Cisco ASR 9000 Series Multiservice Edge (MSE) and Ethernet MSE (E-MSE) capabilities allow enterprises to offer powerful business VPN services with strong Service-Level Agreement (SLA) enforcement. Such services typically require simultaneous scale increases across multiple dimensions, for example, the number of Virtual Route Forwarding (VRF) interfaces, IPv4 and IPv6 route scaling, Bidirectional Forwarding Detection (BFD) sessions, and instances of Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) Cisco NSR interfaces. A Cisco ASR 9900 system configuration requiring high multiple-dimensional scale requires the Service-Edge (SE) optimized route processor model to support the increased system scale.

Timing synchronization is an integral part of traditional circuit-based networks, so the availability of equivalent functions in next-generation Ethernet-based architectures has quickly become a critical requirement. The Cisco ASR 9900 chassis have GPS, and BITS connections on the route processor, along with SyncE and PTP support natively on the line cards, which gives mobile providers ample options for time and frequency synchronization. Additionally, the Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor supplies centralized clocking functions throughout the system, providing consolidated timing distribution and recovery to and from the line cards.

Product specifications

Table 4 provides details about the ASR 9900 RP3-X, which supports the Cisco ASR 9912 and Cisco ASR 9922 chassis, therefore providing common sparing. Both Cisco ASR 9922 and ASR 9912 systems are designed to the same high standards of performance and reliability. They feature the same power and thermal innovations, and they can share route processors, line cards, Power Entry Modules (PEMs), and power supplies, for greater flexibility in your network planning.

Table 4.        Product Specifications in XR 7.6.2 or Later


Part number or specification

Route processor



For simplicity and common sparing, this route processor is introduced on Cisco IOS XR 64-bit Release 7.6.2, and it supports both Cisco ASR 9912 and ASR 9922 chassis.

Part numbers of supported line cards

5th Generation


4th Generation


3rd Generation



  No single point of failure
  Route-processor redundancy (both route processors must be of the same kind)
  Software redundancy

Physical specifications (includes ejector bracket/lever)

Each route processor occupies 1 slot; a redundant-route-processor configuration occupies 2 slots in Cisco ASR 9922 and ASR 9912 chassis.

  Height: 1.63 in. (4.14 cm)
  Width: 16.86 in. (42.82 cm)
  Depth: 24.67 in. (62.66 cm)
  Weight: 18.89 lb (8.57 kg)

Environmental Specifications

Operating temperature (nominal)

41 to 104°F (5 to 40°C)

Operating aisle temperature

23 to 122°F (-5 to 50°C)

Note: Short-term refers to a period of not more than 96 consecutive hours and a total of not more than 15 days in 1 year (a total of 360 hours in any given year, but no more than 15 occurrences during that 1-year period).

Operating humidity (nominal) (relative humidity)

5 to 90%

Operating humidity

5 to 93%
Note: Not to exceed 0.026 kg water/kg of dry air

Storage temperature

-40 to 158°F (-40 to 70°C)

Storage (relative humidity)

5 to 95%

Operating altitude

-60 to 4000m (up to 2000m conforms to IEC/EN/UL/CSA 60950 requirements)

Note: Max operating temperature (Short-Term) will be derated by 1°C for every 300m altitude if router operates above 1800m altitude


Network Equipment Building Standards (NEBS)

Cisco ASR 9900 platforms are designed to meet these standards (qualification in progress):

  SR-3580: NEBS Criteria Levels (Level 3)
  GR-1089-CORE: NEBS Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) and Safety
  GR-63-CORE: NEBS Physical Protection

ETSI standards

Cisco ASR 9900 platforms are designed to meet these standards:

  EN300 386: Telecommunications Network Equipment (EMC)
  ETSI 300 019 Storage Class 1.1
  ETSI 300 019 Transportation Class 2.3
  ETSI 300 019 Stationary Use Class 3.1E
  EN55022: Information Technology Equipment (Emissions)
  EN55024: Information Technology Equipment (Immunity)
  EN50082-1/EN-61000-6-1: Generic Immunity Standard

EMC standards

Cisco ASR 9900 platforms are designed to meet these standards:

  FCC Class A
  ICES 003 Class A
  AS/NZS 3548 Class A
  CISPR 22 (EN55022) Class A
  VCCI Class A
  BSMI Class A
  IEC/EN 61000-3-2: Power Line Harmonics
  IEC/EN 61000-3-3: Voltage Fluctuations and Flicker
  EN 50121-4: Railway EMC

Immunity Standards

Cisco ASR 9900 platforms are designed to meet these standards:

  IEC/EN-61000-4-2: Electrostatic Discharge Immunity (8kV Contact, 15kV Air)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-3: Radiated Immunity (10V/m)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-4: Electrical Fast Transient Immunity (2kV Power, 1kV Signal)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-5: Surge AC Port (4kV CM, 2kV DM)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-5: Signal Ports (1kV)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-5: Surge DC Port (1kV)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-6: Immunity to Conducted Disturbances (10Vrms)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-8: Power Frequency Magnetic Field Immunity (30A/m)
  IEC/EN-61000-4-11: Voltage DIPS, Short Interruptions, and Voltage Variations
  EN 50121-4: Railway EMC

Safety Standards

Cisco ASR 9900 platforms are designed to meet these standards:

  UL/CSA/IEC/EN 60950-1
  UL/CSA/IEC/EN 62368-1
  IEC/EN 60825 Laser Safety
  FDA: Code of Federal Regulations Laser Safety
  AS/NZS 62368-1

Cisco Services for Cisco ASR 9000 Series Route processors

Through a lifecycle services approach, Cisco delivers comprehensive support to service providers to help them successfully deploy, operate, and optimize their Cisco Prime Evolved Programmable Networks. Cisco Services for Cisco ASR 9000 Series Aggregation Services Routers provide the services and proven methodologies that help assure service deployment with substantial return on investment, operational excellence, optimal performance, and high availability. These services are delivered using leading practices, tools, processes, and lab environments developed specifically for Cisco ASR 9000 Series deployments and post implementation support. The Cisco Services team addresses your specific requirements, mitigates risk to existing revenue-generating services, and helps accelerate time to market for new network services.

For more information about Cisco Services, contact your local Cisco account representative or visit:

Ordering information

Table 5 provides ordering information for the Cisco ASR 9900 Route Processor 3.

Table 5.        Ordering Information

Product description

Supported Software Release

Part number

ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Packet Transport - Premium

Cisco IOS XR Software Release 7.6.2 or later


ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Packet Transport - Premium, spare

Cisco IOS XR Software Release 7.6.2 or later


ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Service Edge - Premium

Cisco IOS XR Software Release 7.6.2 or later


ASR 9900 Route Processor 3 for Service Edge - Premium, Spare

Cisco IOS XR Software Release 7.6.2 or later


To place an order, visit Cisco Ordering Homepage and refer to Table 5.

Product sustainability

Information about Cisco’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives and performance is provided in Cisco’s CSR and sustainability reporting.

Table 6.        Product sustainability

Sustainability Topic



Information on product-material-content laws and regulations


Information on electronic waste laws and regulations, including our products, batteries and packaging

WEEE Compliance

Information on product takeback and reuse program

Cisco Takeback and Reuse Program

Sustainability Inquiries



Product packaging weight and materials


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Document history

Table 7.        Document history

New or Revised Topic

Described In


Initial revision of RP3-X data sheet

New Data sheet

June, 2022




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