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We report the current status of our work on a new research framework for the clean-slate design of next-generation optical access (NGOA) architectures and protocols. The proposed research framework consists of two major components: A comparative analysis framework and a virtual test bed. The comparative analysis framework is based on a multivariate non-inferiority testing procedure and a notion of equivalent circuit rate (ECR); it is capable of statistically comparing multiple performance measures in an integrated way and providing quantification of the effective bandwidth for users of a candidate system with respect to a reference one based on user-perceived performances. The virtual test bed is implemented as simulation models of candidate architectures and protocols together with supporting environments providing a complete experimental platform for the comparative analysis. We review the current implementation of the virtual test bed based on OMNeT++/INET simulation framework and discuss the issues and challenges we met during initial studies together with plans and strategies to address them in the next version. To demonstrate the capability of the proposed research framework, we present preliminary results from an ongoing study of the elasticity of NGOA architectures, which show that the hybrid TDM/WDM-PON can manage the same user-perceived performances as those of the dedicated point-to-point architecture with the same line rate by varying the number of tunable transceivers for a wide range of traffic load.
Date of Conference: 5-7 Oct. 2011