October 18, 2019

Networking and Routing in Space Division Multiplexed Systems

  • Marom D.
  • Neilson D.
  • Ryf R.

Optical networks serve as the cornerstone of our connected society, enabling the information superhighway that delivers the Internet all across the globe. As the number of users and data services increase, the network technology and architecture must adapt for it to continue to efficiently and economically support the larger traffic loads. Currently these optical networks consist of optical transceivers of different wavelengths whose signals are wavelength division multiplexed (WDM) together and transported using fiber optic cables with optical amplifiers. Each fiber can potentially support more than one hundred wave-lengths each carrying hundreds of gigabits per second for a per fiber capacity in the tens of terabits per second. The paths these optical signals traverse through the network can be selected by using reconfigurable optical add drop multiplexers (ROADM) at network nodes. In this chapter we address current architecture of WDM networks and how it may evolve in the future to support even greater capacities through the use of additional spatial paths, an approach referred to as space division multiplexing (SDM) as an analogy to WDM.

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