Physical-layer adaptive resource allocation in software-defined data center networks

Mingwei Yang, Houman Rastegarfar, Ivan B. Djordjevic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


With the deep physical-layer programmability enabled by software-defined networking (SDN), it is now feasible to realize optical data center transceivers that adapt their transmission parameters in response to timevarying traffic demand and signal quality conditions. In this paper, we develop a cross-layer performance tuning framework for wavelength-tunable data center transceivers, combining scalable and secure modulation order and code rate adaptation. We develop new physical-layer control modules and combine SDN control with distributed preamble encoding in order to achieve both rate adaptation and node synchronization in a wavelength-routing data center testbed. Our experimental and theoretical studies based on pulse amplitude modulation and low-density parity-check coding point to the significance of joint modulation order and code-rate adaptation in data centers. We report real-time resource adaptation with switching speeds on the order of hundreds of milliseconds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1015-1026
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Optical Communications and Networking
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018


  • Adaptive modulation and coding
  • Data center
  • Preamble encoding
  • Pulse amplitude modulation (PAM)
  • Software-defined networking (SDN)
  • Wavelength routing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications


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