The optical networking infrastructure and DWDM have changed dramatically in the last few years. The bandwidth in the core (not accessed yet) has become a commodity, changing many networking assumptions. Recent advancements in optical technologies have created a radical mismatch between the optical transmission world and the electrical forwarding/routing world. Currently, a single strand of optical fiber can transmit more bandwidth than the entire Internet core. Furthermore, some of the basic characteristics of optical networking are different from traditional L3 networking.
Impendence mismatch has many dimensions. One example is the bottlenecks that are located at the peering points between the current ASs and ISPs. The peering is done in L3 and above. New sets of services can be built in L1-L2 and a dynamic light path can be created. Provisioning is a long and inefficient process. New technologies have emerged to build the capabilities of automatic switched optical networks (ASON) in the Long Haul and resilient packet rings (RPR) in the Metro. The capabilities of new optical technologies are limited by current Internet architecture. We are analyzing solutions to bridge the mismatch between optical and electrical transmission. One of our fundamental research goals is to determine what is needed to build a new Internet architecture that utilizes the new advancements in optical networking.