Columbia University

NSF grant to support resilient and programmable metro fiber networks

Prof. Daniel Kilper (University of Arizona), Dr. Daniel Tardent (Calient), Prof. Keren Bergman, and Prof. Gil Zussman received a grant from the NSF Accelerating Innovation Research (AIR) Technology Translation (TT) program. The grant will support the project “Resilient and Programmable Metro Fiber System“.

The project focuses on translating optical networking control and switching technology developed in the NSF Center for Integrated Access Networks (CIAN) Engineering Research Center (ERC) to support more flexible and reconfigurable fiber optical systems. The importance of the resilient and programmable metro optical networking system stems from the fact that it can support resolving data traffic bottlenecks (e.g., in cases of natural disaster). The project will aim to demonstrate a proof-of-concept reconfigurable fiber system that has the capability to automatically switch the metro fiber connections between different metro, access, and data center optical transmission systems. The main concept involves using space switching in metro network nodes or central offices to reconfigure the fiber connectivity across multiple communication platforms including reconfigurable optical add drop multiplexing (ROADM) and other access and distribution optical systems. Optical physical layer control algorithms and software defined networking (SDN) based protocols will be used to manage switching over optically amplified links on fast time scales.