Center for Integrated Access Networks Strategic Plan
The CIAN strategic plan integrates three major elements:
- Research thrusts with testbed activity
- Industrial collaborations and technology transfer
- Education, outreach, and diversity.
The existing network is typically divided into access, metropolitan (regional), and wide-area (or core/backbone), with optics being currently used mainly for optical point-to-point transport and electronics used mainly for routing and switching, especially at the aggregation points and interfaces between networks.
These separations and the optimization at each level have been established independent of one another. In addition, in the case of the core network, the optimization is also independent of the specific services required. It is inefficient to build a separate network to accommodate each required service. CIAN's vertically integrated research structure is designed to achieve our mission of creating fundamentally new integrated optoelectronic WDM subsystems for access network applications.
Therefore, the future network will still be divided into heterogeneous access networks that interface to the core through edge nodes. These edge nodes aggregate data and map application-specific services into standard core protocols.
Maintaining and cost-effectively scaling the high data rates in the existing core with the required flexibility of access networks defines the two principle research focus areas of CIAN:
- Transform expensive discrete components based subsystems into flexible cost-effective integrated optoelectronic subsystems to achieve a scaleable and affordable high data rate access network that is seamlessly interfaced to the core.
- Demonstrate flexible network functionalities that provide seamless interface between access and core and scalability by moving services from the higher layers of the network closer to the physical layer. This requires cross-layer optimization. For example, CIAN will develop a multicasting (one-to-many) service, typically implemented with a software protocol, using hardwareâ€“based nonlinear optical process at the physical layer in conjunction with cross-layer optimization. The result is a service that is more transparent to end-user applications.