Abstract

As a solution to the high energy consumption caused by numerous optical–electrical–optical (O-E-O) conversions in electronic switches, and the poor contention handling of all-optical switches, we investigated a hybrid switch that supplements optical switching with an electronic buffer. Our study takes into account reliable, fast, and default packets that have different requirements of quality-of-service performance criteria. We show, by simulations, that with only a few electronic ports to the buffer, the hybrid switch significantly improves the packet loss rates and the sustainable system load compared to an all-optical bufferless switch and meets the different packet classes’ requirements. In addition, we quantified the considerable decrease of O-E-O conversions as well as the switching latency achieved by the hybrid switch compared to an electronic switch.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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