Abstract

Due to the large transmission speeds and enormous volume of transferred data, network reliability performance and cost-efficiency are among the key concerns in optical network design. Reducing the number of used optical components with higher failure probability within nodes represents a promising approach for achieving reliable and cost-effective optical network operation as it reduces the correlated risk of connection failures and enables reusing idle components as redundancy for failure recovery. This can result in greater overall network availability and lower loss of data and related revenue. Recently introduced synthetic network function programmable optical nodes implemented by architecture on demand (AoD) support the aforementioned approach by offering high levels of flexibility, modularity, and scalability. In AoD nodes, an optical backplane (i.e., optical switch) hosts optical components and enables arbitrary node configurations by cross-connecting attached modules. As a result, each lightpath passing through the node uses only the components necessary for fulfilling the switching and processing requirements. AoD nodes can perform switching at the wavelength and waveband granularity and also support switching of lightpaths at the fiber level by connecting an input fiber directly to the targeted output, referred to as fiber switching (FS). The latter functionality is particularly beneficial for the availability aspect, as it helps decrease the number of failure-prone components traversed by each lightpath, allowing them to be reused as redundancy. In this paper we demonstrate and evaluate self-healing capabilities of AoD nodes arising from their flexibility and ability to employ idle components for failure recovery. To improve efficiency of self-healing by increasing the number of idle components within nodes, we propose a routing algorithm which obtains a targeted portion of lightpaths switched at the fiber level, called the enforced FS (EFS) algorithm. We study the impact of AoD on network availability at different traffic switching granularities and compare it to traditional hard-wired node architecture via simulation. The results show significant improvements of availability and recovery time due to node-level restoration, with reduced network outage time and operator revenue losses. Finally, to the best of our knowledge, for the first time we experimentally demonstrate two novel hard-wired and synthetic reconfigurable optical add–drop multiplexer architectures with redundancy and all-optical self-healing capabilities.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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