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We present a high-speed optical wavelength converter that is capable of converting the data to the same wavelength using a single semiconductor optical amplifier. Error-free wavelength conversion is demonstrated at a bit-rate of 40 Gb/s. The wavelength converter utilizes a counterpropagation scheme assisted by blue-detuned optical filtering technology. The blue-detuned optical filter shortens the recovery time of the wavelength converter, from initial 100 ps down to less than 6 ps, ensuring 40-Gb/s operation. The counterpropagation scheme shows a slow gain saturation time, which becomes a determinant factor for the operating speed of the proposed system. This wavelength converter is constructed by using commercially available fiber pigtailed components. It has a simple configuration and allows photonic integration.