With the growing demand for bandwidth and the need to support new services, several challenges are awaiting future photonic networks. In particular, the performance of current network nodes dominated by electrical routers/switches is seen as a bottleneck that is accentuated by the pressing demand for reducing the network power consumption. With the concept of performing more node functions with optics/optoelectronics, optical packet switching (OPS) provides a promising solution. We have developed a hybrid optoelectronic router (HOPR) prototype that exhibits low power consumption and low latency together with high functionality. The router is enabled by key optical/optoelectronic devices and subsystem technologies that are combined with CMOS electronics in a novel architecture to leverage the strengths of both optics/optoelectronics and electronics. In this chapter, we review our recent HOPR prototype developed for realizing a new photonic intra data center (DC) network. After briefly explaining about the HOPR‐based DC network, we highlight the underlying technologies of the new prototype that enables label processing, switching, and buffering of asynchronous arbitrary‐length 100‐Gbps (25‐Gbps × 4λs) burst‐mode optical packets with enhanced power efficiency and reduced latency.
Part of the book: Optoelectronics