This paper proposes and experimentally demonstrates a fully-distributed All-Optical TOKEN (AO-TOKEN) contention resolution technique for AWGR-based optical interconnects. The AO-TOKEN technique is implemented by exploiting the saturation effect in SOAs placed at the AWGR outputs. A polarization-diversity scheme allows the data and control planes to share the same physical link. The AO-TOKEN is more scalable than alternative electrical/optical solutions since it eliminates the need for a centralized electrical control plane. Our experimental results show that the technique can work over a wavelength-range of ≈23 nm using off-the-shelf components. We also successfully demonstrate all-optical contention resolution, packet transmission, and switching with error-free operation at 10 Gb/s.
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