Finished Project


Elastic Optical Networks


Project Key Information

Start date

End date Budget (total) Effort (total) Project-ID
November 2010 April 2013 5204 k€ 40.8PY CP07-006
Project Coordinator
Patricia Layec
Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs
e-mail: Patricia.Layec(at)

Project Consortium
Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs France France C2TECH Turkey
Ekinops France Nordunet Denmark
France Telecom / Orange Labs France Danish Technical University Denmark
Chalmers University of Technology Sweden Analogies S.A. Greece

EO-Net will carry out cutting-edge research with the aim to design and demonstrate a novel networking concept based on “elasticity” for improved utilization of resources in Wavelength Division Multiplexed (WDM) optical networks. By “elasticity” it is meant that a certain number of transmission parameters such as the optical data-rate, the modulation format or the wavelength-spacing between channels, which are fixed in currently deployed networks, will be made tunable.

Elasticity will thus allow improved matching between the transmission parameters, the network infrastructures (and the physical impairments they cause to optical signals) and the traffic profile. The benefits will be wide-ranging, including in particular increased available network capacity, lower cost per bit, better energy efficiency and better scalability.

EO-Net will provide a global picture of elastic optical networks by integrating research activities focusing on all the aspects of networking that are impacted by an elastic optical layer, namely:

  • Design and assembly of elastic transponders, capable of transmission at tunable data-rate, modulation format and channel spacing
  • Design and characterization of elastic WDM transmission systems including in particular fine estimation of the impact of physical impairments on optical signals as a function of the transmission parameters.
  • Design and assembly of interfaces (linecards) between routers and elastic transponders for flexible aggregation of standard traffic onto elastic channels
  • Development of algorithms for traffic grooming, routing, format and bandwidth allocation taking into account the impact of physical impairments on optical signals
  • Design and test of a control plane for the management of connections in elastic optical networks.

The outcomes of the aforementioned research activities will be integrated into a multi-layer demonstrator to validate the concept of network elasticity and will also be the basis for detailed techno-economic studies assessing the cost of the proposed solution and assessing which level of elasticity is most appropriate for future competitive products. Elastic functionalities are in particular expected to be transferred on a short time scale to 100Gb/s coherent technologies currently under development.

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