Tele- and datacom operators struggle to keep up with the soaring, increasingly volatile traffic over their networks. New streaming services are setting busy-hour internet usage on a steep growth curve reaching 36% compound annual growth rate that exceeds the average network traffic increase of a still hefty +25%. Taking a leap beyond current technologies, QAMeleon aims to deliver a new generation of photonic devices for scaling core and metropolitan data networks to the next decade. QAMeleon will integrate innovative photonic components into a fully functional subsystem comprising of a 3Tb/s Sliceable Bandwidth Variable Transponder (S-BVT), a flexible Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexer (ROADM) with large scale Wavelength Selective Switches (WSS) and TransPonder Aggressors (TPA), and a fast ROADM for metropolitan access. The hardware subsystem will be completed with an overarching controller framework and tested in field-trials.
The integrated optics in the QAMeleon project must operate with extremely narrow channel spacings and at dual polarisation. This requires processing with very challenging dimensional and uniformity control in a technology with low polarization dependency (birefringence), and polarization splitting and merging building blocks. SMART Photonics is task leader for the development of narrow channel, polarisation-insensitive Arrayed Waveguide Gratings with a 3-sigma critical dimension uniformity below 20nm. Furthermore we play a crucial role in the development of polarization insensitive optical amplifiers, optical couplers, and polarization beam splitters and combiners.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme. The publication reflects only the author’s view. The commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
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