Colorless gigabit wavelength-division-multiplexing (WDM)/time-division-multiplexing (TDM) hybrid passive optical network (PON) using a remote protocol terminator is proposed and experimentally demonstrated. The system consists of reflective semiconductor optical amplifier-based WDM-PON and a legacy TDM-PON, combined with a simple and efficient remote node structure in order to provide high-speed fiber-to-the-home service to a large area with a high population density. The demonstrated system can support 512 subscribers with a single feeder fiber. The performance and feasibility of the system were evaluated by transmitting gigabit per second data including the effects of Rayleigh backscattering and 20 km attenuation. The system has been used by Korea Telecom to provide commercial services in Gwangju, Korea, since March 2009, after successfully passing through the benchmark test. This is the first commercial deployment of a WDM/TDM hybrid PON. It can accommodate field-deployed TDM-PON link without any modification and extend the maximum total reach of PON link by the use of remote protocol termination. Number of subscribers and the allocated bandwidth to the subscribers can be designed by simply changing the splitting ratio.
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