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AWG-based optical switching fabrics are receiving increasing attention due to their simplicity and good performance. However, AWGs are affected by coherent crosstalk, that can significantly impair system operation when the same wavelength is used simultaneously on several input ports. To permit large port counts in a N ? N AWG, a possible solution is to schedule data transmissions across the AWG preventing switch configurations that generate large crosstalk. The authors study the properties and the existence conditions of switch configurations able to control coherent crosstalk. The presented results show that, by running a properly constrained scheduling algorithm to avoid or minimize crosstalk, it is possible to operate an AWG-based switch with large port counts without significant performance degradation.
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