A device in an Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) network that routes data between an ATM backbone network and local area networks (LANs). Edge routers can be used to translate Ethernet or Token Ring data for transmission over ATM backbones. This allows ATM to be used as a backbone for connecting multiple LANs into a metropolitan area network (MAN) or wide area network (WAN).
An alternative and more commonly used configuration is to connect LAN networking equipment directly to ATM backbone switches, which provide points of contact with an ATM provider’s backbone network.
An edge router can function as an ATM switch and provide routing capabilities for LAN networking protocols - all in one hybrid device.
Graphic E-2. Edge router.