ROTOS: A Reconfigurable and Cost-Effective Architecture for High-Performance Optical Data Center Networks

Xuwei Xue, Fulong Yan (Corresponding author), Kristif Prifti, Fu Wang, Bitao Pan, Xiaotao Guo, Shaojuan Zhang, Nicola Calabretta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

51 Citations (SciVal)


Fast and high capacity optical switching techniques have the potential to enable low latency and high throughput optical data center networks (DCNs) to afford the rapid increasing traffic boosted by multiple applications. Flexibility of the DCN is of key importance to provide adaptive and dynamic bandwidth and capacity to handle the variable traffic patterns of heterogeneous applications. Aiming at improving the network performance and the system flexibility of optical DCNs, we propose and investigate a novel optical DCN architecture named ROTOS based on reconfigurable optical top of rack (ToR) and fast optical switches. In the proposed DCN architecture, the novel optical flexible ToRs employing multiple transceivers (TRXs) and a wavelength selective switch (WSS) are reconfigured by the software-defined networking (SDN) control plane. The bandwidth can be dynamically allocated to the dedicated optical links on-demand according to the desired oversubscription (OV) and intra-/inter-cluster traffic matrix. Numerical investigations of the novel architecture under realistic traffic model indicate that dynamically allocating the TRXs and elastically controlling the WSS, a packet loss below 1E-5 and a server-to-server latency lower than 3 μs can be guaranteed for different traffic patterns at load of 0.4. With respect to the DCN with static interconnections, the average packet loss of ROTOS decreases two orders of magnitude and the average server-to-server latency performance improves by 21.5%. Scalability investigation to a large number of servers shows limited (11%) performance degradation as the network scale from 2560 to 40960 servers. Additionally, the dynamic bandwidth allocation of the DCN is experimentally validated. Network performance results show a packet loss of 0.05 and 5.85 μs end-to-end latency at the load of 0.8. Finally, investigations on the cost and power consumption confirm that the ROTOS DCN architecture has 28.4% lower cost and 35.0% better improvement for power efficiency with respect to the electrical switch based DCNs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9119111
Pages (from-to)3485-3494
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Lightwave Technology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2020


  • Data center architecture
  • optical packet switch
  • reconfigurable network


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