A Networking Structure Favorable for All-Optical Packet Switching

S. Jiang (PRC)


Networking structures, all-optical packet switching (AOPS) and hierarchical source routing.


All-optical packet switching (AOPS) technology is the key to fully utilizing the tremendous bandwidth provided by advanced optical communication techniques through forwarding packets in optical domain. However, long packet headers and other complex operations such as table lookup and packet header re-writing still have to be processed electronically for lack of cost-effective optical processing techniques. This not only increases system complexity but also limits packet forwarding speed due to optical-electronic-optical conversion. Lots of work of improving optical processing techniques to realize AOPS for existing networking structures is reported in the literature. Differently, this paper proposes a new networking structure to facilitate AOPS realization through simplifying networking operations. This structure only requires an AOPS hop to process a short packet header to forward packets across it with neither table lookup nor header re-writing operations. It can support both connection-oriented and connectionless services to carry various types of traffic. This structure is mainly based on the hierarchical source routing approach. The analytical results show that average packet header sizes are still acceptable even for long paths consisting of many nodes, each of which supports a large number of output ports.

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