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Proceedings Paper

Optical fiber crossbar switch
Author(s): Michael Kevin Kilcoyne; Stephen M. Beccue; Berinder Brar; G. Robinson; Kenneth D. Pedrotti; William A. Haber
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Paper Abstract

Advances in high performance computers and signal processing systems have led to parallel system architectures. The main limitation in achieving the performance expected of these parallel systems has been the realization of an efficient means to interconnect many processors into a effective parallel system. Electronic interconnections have proved cumbersome, costly and ineffective. The Optical Fiber Crossbar Switch (OFCS) is a compact low power, multi-gigahertz bandwidth multi-channel switch which can be used in large scale computer and telecommunication applications. The switch operates in the optical domain using GaAs semiconductor lasers to transmit wideband multiple channel optical data over fiber optic cables. Recently, a 32 X 32 crossbar switching system was completed and demonstrated. Error free performance was obtained at a data bandwidth of 410 MBPS, using a silicon switch IC. The switch can be completely reconfigured in less than 50 nanoseconds under computer control. The fully populated OFCS has the capability to handle 12.8 gigabits per second (GBPS) of data while switching this data over 32 channels without the loss of a single bit during switching. GaAs IC technology has now progressed to the point that 16 X 16 GaAs based crossbar switch Ics are available which have increased the data bandwidth capability to 2.4 GBPS. The present optical interfaces are integrated GaAs transmitter drivers, GaAs lasers, and integrated GaAs optical receivers with data bandwidths exceeding 2.4 GBPS. A system using all Ill-V switching and optoelectronic components is presently under development for both NASA and DoD programs. The overall system is designed to operate at 1.3 GBPS. It is expected that these systems will find wide application in high capacity computing systems based on parallel microprocessor architecture which require high data bandwidth communication between processors. The OFCS will also have application in commercial optical telecommunication systems where high bandwidth communication has already exceeded 2 GBPS. There are also critical requirements for a secure fiber optic switching system in military Command Control Communication (C3) situations.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 July 1990
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 1215, Digital Optical Computing II, (1 July 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.18062
Show Author Affiliations
Michael Kevin Kilcoyne, Rockwell International Corp. (United States)
Stephen M. Beccue, Rockwell International Corp. (United States)
Berinder Brar, Rockwell International Corp. (United States)
G. Robinson, Rockwell International Corp. (United States)
Kenneth D. Pedrotti, Rockwell International Corp. (United States)
William A. Haber, Motorola, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1215:
Digital Optical Computing II
Raymond Arrathoon, Editor(s)

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