Multi-wavelength optical add-drop multiplexer with nanosecond reconfiguration times for local area networking

Guy F. Roberts, Kevin A. Williams, Jeremy Sosabowski, Richard V. Penty, Ian H. White, Madeleine Glick, Derek McAuley

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


It is desirable for data networks to have low transmission latency. This may be achieved by exploiting the short packet lengths and the high bandwidths that can be achieved using multi-wavelength operation. Semiconductor optical amplifiers (SOAs) have been demonstrated as building blocks for optical switches and have also been shown to be well suited to the fast switching required for optical packet switching [1]. We have realised an InP based add-drop multiplexer (ADM) integrated on a single 850 um × 850 μm chip. The bit error penalty performance has previously been shown to be below 1.2 dB for each of the operating paths through the device: add, drop and through modes at 2.5 Gbit/s data rates. Further, low penalty operation has previously been demonstrated experimentally with 4 simultaneous wavelengths [2]. It is known that the dynamic range of an SOA can limit the number of wavelengths supported and that the pattern sensitivity in SOAs increases their operating penalty [3]. We investigate the multi-wavelength operation of our ADM device and show that a power penalty of less than 0.8 dB is maintained over a 20 dB input power dynamic range. We also show a -3 dB optical bandwidth of 30 nm suitable for multi-wavelength operation of cascaded ADMs. Finally we present experimental results to show that the pattern dependent operating penalty of the ADM is reduced as the number of wavelengths of asynchronous data is increased. This result may be exploited in our proposed optical data network to produce an improved optical penalty.

Original languageEnglish
Article number24
Pages (from-to)156-163
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2004
EventIntegrated Optics and Photonic Integrated Circuits - Strasbourg, France
Duration: 27 Apr 200429 Apr 2004


  • Dynamic range
  • Pattern sensitivity
  • Penalty
  • SOA
  • WDM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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