Abstract

All-optical packet switching (OPS) is one of the promising technologies for the next generation of optical networks. It realizes the packet switching in optical domain that eliminates optical–electrical and electrical–optical conversions. One of the main components in an OPS network is the optical interconnect that provides the basic functionality of directing packets from input ports to the desired output ports, while maintaining data in the optical domain. Advances in all-optical technologies enable the wavelength exchanging phenomenon that can be used to develop new optical interconnect architectures. These architectures simultaneously combine the switching and the conversion domains. Thus, the use of the exchanging technology reduces the complexity without impacting the overall switching performance. In this paper, a new bufferless OPS interconnect by adopting wavelength optical crossbars that can combine both switching and wavelength conversion capabilities is proposed. The proposed architecture can operate in either of two modes: blocking or nonblocking. Our analysis to the proposed architecture confirms that, for the same number of input and output ports, a reduction in conversion and switching complexity can reached up to 50% and 99%, respectively, compared to traditional architectures.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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