Panel Title: Compact Waveguide Devices and Switching Implementation in Optical Network
With the advent of optical technologies, most notably optical networks with wavelength division multiplexed (WDM) transmission having several wavelengths per fiber as channels, produce much interest in solving the huge demand on the internet with ever increasing traffic. Transmission rate of a channel is currently limited to 40 Gbps. Now-a-day the implementation of IP (Internet Protocol) over DWDM are growing and there is a gradual migration from the existing IP over ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) and over SONET (Synchronous Optical Network). With the techniques of GMPLS (generalized version of Multi Protocol Label Switching) and OXC (optical cross connect) IP packets are directly connected to each other into wavelength channels. The signal with O-E-O (optical to electrical and electrical to optical) conversion produces a delay where as the signal without O-E-O reduces delay time and thus produces additional network robustness. Theoretically, the data rates could be pushed somewhere between 25-75 terabits per second. In some networks, IP routers are connected through SONET interfaces and DWDM links. The router and routing techniques with OXC require switches and their implementation. Other than opto-electronic switches, the optical switches are used directly for routing without converting the optical signal to electrical signal. The panel discussions will be focused on different implementation methods of optical switches, such as MEMS, liquid crystals, bubble, waveguide type TO (Thermooptic) and EO (Electrooptic), with high index contrast compact devices, wavelength routing switches (AWG and tunable λ), semiconductor optical Phased Array, optical RAM, etc. and suggestions will be proposed for the technologies considering different available materials according to the specific need of the switches and optical devices in view of their size, capacity, speed, scalability, cost and reliability in DWDM systems. Maturity and potentiality of Optical Cross-Connects (OXC), Optical Circuit Switching (OCS), Optical Packet Switching (OPS) and Optical Burst Switching (OBS) will be discussed. Optical level switching (OLS) offers interoperability between OPS, OBS, and OCS and demonstrates successfully in Global optical network for multi-service applications. Unlike electronic packet switching routers, optical routers can exploit many wavelengths to reduce the buffer sizes. The technological aspects of optical switching and the overview of advances carried out in the Network of Excellence (NoE) e-Photon/ONe+ also will be addressed in panel discussions.