Refining the Internet
Rapid growth of the Internet is pushing the evolution of information technology and increasingly, telecommunication networks are changing from voice-centric into data-centric networks. As a result, packet switching is emerging as the most efficient and flexible technique for high speed, intermittent data transmissions. But researchers who hope to design the next-generation of high-speed, multi-service Internet networks face significant challenges. Two of the greatest include: developing advanced broadband network control architectures and communications protocols to support the quality of service guarantees over IP networks; and establishing efficient algorithms to manage routing and connections in optical networks.
With funding from the Canada Research Chair in Optical Networks, Dr. Hussein T. Mouftah and his highly skilled team are creating the Next-Generation Internet facility to further advance their already considerable research in these areas. Housed within the university's cutting edge School of Information Technology and Engineering, this centre will comprise state-of-the-art laboratories for research in the joint design of the Internet Protocol (IP) and optical layers in broadband information networks. The team will rely heavily on the reconfigurable transmission capacity of the optical layer provided by Wavelength Division Multiplexing (WDM) and on the functionality of the electronic IP layer to develop efficient architectures that reduce the complexity and cost, and improve the reliability of multi-layer networks.
The work includes: developing methods to test, monitor and evaluate the performance of various traffic-, resource- and connection-management techniques for the Next-Generation Internet; designing and implementing more efficient methods to carry broadband IP traffic over WDM optical transport networks; and assessing how advanced network elements might affect the performance and functionality of the optical layer.
Discoveries will be shared with Ottawa's high-tech industry, and with various standards bodies and industrial associations such as the Internet Engineering Task Force. Ultimately, this should lead to the design of highly reliable, cost-effective and flexible broadband information networks that can effectively manage the public's growing demand for electronic services.