We present a 1 × 2 all-optical packet switch. All the processing of the header information is carried out in the optical domain. The optical headers are recognized by employing the two-pulse correlation principle in a semiconductor laser amplifier in loop optical mirror (SLALOM) configuration. The processed header information is stored in an optical flip-flop memory that is based on a symmetric configuration of two coupled lasers. The optical flip-flop memory drives a wavelength routing switch that is based on cross-gain modulation in a semiconductor optical amplifier. We also present an alternative optical packet routing concept that can be used for all-optical buffering of data packets. In this case, an optical threshold function that is based on a asymmetric configuration of two coupled lasers is used to drive a wavelength routing switch. Experimental results are presented for both the 1 × 2 optical packet switch and the optical buffer switch.


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