The intensification of traffic in the access network requires the development of novel architectural solutions for a reconfigurable network topology and components based on optical technologies. We present a hybrid ring-shaped wavelength division multiplexing (WDM)–time division multiplexing (TDM) passive optical network (PON) that is capable of providing bandwidth on demand at high bit rates in a transparent and dynamic manner. Our cost-efficient and scalable network architecture is based on integratable components such as a wavelength-agile optical networking unit and a microring-resonator-based remote node. An appropriately modified control layer is introduced to manage the network. We also discuss the implementation of optical codes instead of time slots to take the step toward optical code division multiplexing (OCDM) WDM PONs that relieve the network of strict time scheduling of traffic and ranging. Therefore, an additional reduction of complexity in network management, improvement of network scalability, and a guarantee of fully symmetric traffic are foreseen for every user. Finally, we show a scenario for smooth migration from existing PON solutions to our WDM–TDM PON architecture.
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