Abstract

Machine learning (ML) is increasingly applied in optical network management, especially in cross-layer frameworks where physical layer characteristics may trigger changes at the network layer due to transmission performance measurements (quality of transmission, QoT) monitored by optical equipment. Leveraging ML-based QoT estimation approaches has proven to be a promising alternative to exploiting classical mathematical methods or transmission simulation tools. However, supervised ML models rely on large representative training sets, which are often unavailable, due to the lack of the necessary telemetry equipment or of historical data. In such cases, it can be useful to use training data collected from a different network. Unfortunately, the resulting models may be uneffective when applied to the current network, if the training data (the source domain) is not well representative of the network under study (the target domain). Domain adaptation (DA) techniques aim at tackling this issue, to make possible the transfer of knowledge among different networks. This paper compares several DA approaches applied to the problem of estimating the QoT of an optical lightpath using a supervised ML approach. Results show that, when the number of samples from the target domain is limited to a few dozen, DA approaches consistently outperform standard supervised ML techniques.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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