The all-optical router architecture differs greatly in terms of its architecture compared to the conventional electrical routers. The conventional routers perform store-and-forward functions at each line card and crosspoint switches. As a result, the packets suffer jitter and latency, and there is a high overhead due to excessive processing of bits in the time domain. The linecards are relatively complex.

Conventional electrical router system architecture
Conventional electrical router system architecture


In contrast, the all-optical router system designed and demonstrated by our group utilizes a very novel concept of tunable wavelength conversion and wavelength routing, realizing a switching fabric capable of switching and routing in wavelength, time, and space domains. The switching fabric also achieves contention resolution in the three domains for variable size packets, bursts, or circuits. Scalability exceeds 32*(2562 x 2562) using 256x256 AWGRs, and this corresponds to scalability up to 42 Peta bit/sec in a singly routing system for 20 Gb/s linerates.

All-optical router system architecture
All-optical router system architecture