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A next-generation optical regional access network

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8 Author(s)
M. Kuznetsov ; Lincoln Lab., MIT, Lexington, MA, USA ; N. M. Froberg ; S. R. Henion ; H. G. Rao
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We describe an optical regional access network which combines electronic IP routing with intelligent networking functionality of the optical WDM layer. The optical WDM layer provides such networking functions as network logical topology reconfiguration, optical flow switching to offload traffic and bypass IP routers, wavelength routing of signals, protection switching and restoration in the optical domain, and flexible network service provisioning by reconfigurable wavelength connectivity. We discuss key enabling technologies for the WDM layer and describe their limitations. The symbiosis of electronic and optical WDM networking functions also allows support for heterogeneous format traffic and will enable efficient gigabit-per-second user access in next-generation Internet networks

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IEEE Communications Magazine  (Volume:38 ,  Issue: 1 )