A fully functional optical packet switching (OPS) interconnection network based on the data vortex architecture is presented. The photonic switching fabric uniquely capitalizes on the enormous bandwidth advantage of wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) wavelength parallelism while delivering minimal packet transit latency. Utilizing semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA)-based switching nodes and conventional fiber-optic technology, the 12-port system exhibits a capacity of nearly 1 Tb/s. Optical packets containing an eight-wavelength WDM payload with 10 Gb/s per wavelength are routed successfully to all 12 ports while maintaining a bit error rate (BER) of 10-12 or better. Median port-to-port latencies of 110 ns are achieved with a distributed deflection routing network that resolves packet contention on-the-fly without the use of optical buffers and maintains the entire payload path in the optical domain.
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