Abstract

The proliferation of data-centric networks has intensified the research efforts for development of architectures and technologies supporting fast reconfigurable optical networks accommodating any temporal and (or) spatial traffic fluctuations without WDM channel overprovisioning. The novel core network architecture presented in this paper is based on partitioning a meshed network into a number of clusters. Within each cluster the architecture exploits metropolitan area concepts (MACs) to achieve statistical multiplexing gain by transparent transportation of fixed duration slots. These short slots, which are controlled by means of a MAC protocol, are combined to form larger frames that are then exchanged between the clusters. Specific nodes that serve as gateways between clusters undertake the coordination of frame switching and end-to-end routing. Thus, traffic within a particular cluster enjoys reservation-based no-loss transport, while for the communication between clusters either robust two-way reservation schemes or even optical burst switching (OBS) approaches are possible. The end result is an architecture that supports statistical multiplexing within the optical layer with good performance and reasonable complexity.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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