ECE (PCRL) at OFC conference 2017

OFC Conference 2017 took place on March in Los Angeles, California, United States. The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering was represented by PCRL with the following demo oral presentation:

G. Landi, I. Patronas, K. Kontodimas, M. Aziz, K. Christodoulopoulos, A. Kyriakos, M. Capitani, A. F. Hamedani, G. Bernini, D. Reisis, E. Varvarigos, P. Bakopoulos, and H. Avramopoulos, "SDN Control Framework with Dynamic Resource Assignment for Slotted Optical Datacenter Networks," in Optical Fiber Communication Conference, OSA Technical Digest (online) (Optical Society of America, 2017), paper Tu3L.1.

Abstract: An SDN control framework is demonstrated enabling slotted operation for dynamic resources assignment in optically-switched datacenters. The demonstration includes the SDN controller with scheduler plugins and north-/southbound interfaces, and the SDN agent communicating to data-plane.

Optical switching is gaining momentum as a potential path for gracefully scaling data center networks (DCNs) due to its inherent speed, energy efficiency and transparency to bitrate and protocol. To reap the benefits of this dynamically reconfigurable data plane, network control within a software-defined networking (SDN) framework remains an outstanding challenge. This is a nontrivial task due to the idiosyncrasy of optical switches, notably concerning lack of buffering as well as limitations in terms of size and speed of current components. This demonstration showcases an SDN framework capable of controlling an optical DCN with dynamic resource allocation in the optical layer, by means of Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA). As a reference network topology, we use the NEPHELE project data plane ( that consists of pods interconnected with each other via WDM rings (Fig. 1). Each pod consists of multiple racks interconnected in a star topology through their top-of-rack switch (ToR) with a POD switch being the center of the star.

Figure 1: TDMA-enabled controller with north- and southbound interface, operating over the NEPHELE data plane architecture.

Figure 2: Photos from the NEPHELE demo oral presentation at OFC 2017

Contact Persons:

  • Paraskevas Bakopoulos: pbakop[at]
  • Hercules Avramopoulos: hav[at]