Image Number 8 for United States Patent #7218637.
An architecture and related systems for improving the performance of non-blocking data switching systems. In one embodiment, a switching system includes an optical switching core coupled to a plurality of edge units, each of which has a set of ingress ports and a set of egress ports. The switching system also contains a scheduler that maintains two non-blocking data transfer schedules, only one of which is active at a time. Data is transferred through the switching system according to the active schedule. The scheduler monitors the sufficiency of data transferred according to the active schedule and, if the currently active schedule is insufficient, the scheduler recomputes the alternate schedule based on demand data received from the edges/ports and activates the alternate schedule. A timing mechanism is employed to ensure that the changeover to the alternate schedule is essentially simultaneous among the components of the system.