Abstract

We demonstrate WDM-enabled all-passive optical row and column address selector (RAS/CAS) circuits for use as optical static RAM (SRAM) bank peripherals in future optical cache memory implementations. We show that the introduction of the wavelength dimension in both the memory address and data word fields can lead to RAS and CAS architectures that rely exclusively on all-passive wavelength-selective configurations. An all-optical 2 × 4 RAS comprising a wavelength-selective filtering matrix (λ-matrix) and a wavelength-based CAS unit formed by a simple AWG element are demonstrated in proof-of-principle experiments at 10 Gb/s with error-free operation at 10 $^{-9}$ BER value using two different types of WDM SRAM row Access Gate (AG): a cross-phase modulation SOA-MZI gate and a single SOA cross-gain modulation gate, with the first providing the higher performance compared to SOA module and the second offering lower power requirements between the two WDM AG. A chip-scale optical cache peripheral circuitry development path using Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) ring resonators for the λ-matrix implementation is also presented and the proposed architecture is evaluated via physical layer simulations using SOAs as SRAM row AGs at 10 Gb/s for a 16×4 optical SRAM bank. Moreover, we discuss on possible improvements towards reducing insertion losses of the RAS/CAS modules in order to allow for increased block sizes. Finally, we provide a detailed analysis on the design and parameter specifications required for RAS and CAS block size scaling towards supporting higher-capacity optical SRAM banks.

© 2013 IEEE

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