Efficient routing and wavelength assignment for multicast in WDM networks

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-109
Journal / PublicationIEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes


The next generation multimedia applications such as video conferencing and HDTV have raised tremendous challenges on the network design, both in bandwidth and service. As wavelength-division-multiplexing (WDM) networks have emerged as a promising candidate for future networks with large bandwidth, supporting efficient multicast in WDM networks becomes eminent. Different from IP layer, the cost of multicast at WDM layer involves not only bandwidth (wavelength) cost, but also wavelength conversion cost and light splitting cost. It is well known that the optimal multicast problem in WDM networks is NP-hard. In this paper, we will develop an efficient approximation algorithm consisting of two separate but integrated steps: multicast routing and wavelength assignment. We will prove that the problem of optimal wavelength assignment on a multicast tree is not NP-hard; in fact, an optimal wavelength assignment algorithm with complexity of O(NW) is presented. Simulation results have revealed that the optimal wavelength assignment beats greedy algorithms by a large margin in networks using many wavelengths on each link such as dense wavelength-division-multiplexing (DWDM) networks. Our proposed heuristic multicast routing algorithm takes into account both the cost of using wavelength on links and the cost of wavelength conversion. The result multicast tree is derived from the optimal lightpaths used for unicast.

Research Area(s)

  • Multicast, Wavelength assignment, Wavelength routing, WDM networks