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We consider the effect of multiple fibers on wavelength division multiplexing networks without wavelength conversion. We study networks with dynamic wavelength routing and develop accurate analytical models to compare various possible options using single- and multiple-fiber networks. We use results of an analytical model and simulation-based studies to evaluate the blocking performance and cost of multifiber networks. The number of fibers required providing high performance in multifiber networks and their costs are compared. A case is made for using multiple fibers in each link with fewer wavelengths instead of using a single fiber with many wavelengths. In particular, we show that a network with four fibers per link and with four wavelengths on each fiber without any wavelength conversion on any node yields similar same performance as the networks with one fiber per link and 16 wavelengths per fiber on each link and with full wavelength conversion capability on all nodes. In addition, the multifiber network may also offer the cost advantage depending on the relative cost of components. We develop a parametric cost model to show that multiple fibers in each link are an attractive option. Finally, such multifiber networks also has fault tolerance, with respect to a single fiber failure, already built into the system.
Date of Publication: Oct. 2004