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There has been a rapid and ceaseless increase in communication traffic in global networks for the distribution of digital content, such as video streams, visual content, and big data. A forecast of the growth of communication traffic reports an increase in the global internet protocol (IP) traffic: the traffic increases beyond 100 exabyte (EB) per month and beyond 1 zettabyte (ZB) per annum in 2017. Fixed internet traffic occupies the major portion in the meantime; mobile data traffic grows more rapidly and will reach the fixed internet traffic some years after 2020. Such a burst of IP traffic creates demand for greater transmission capacity in optical networks spreading over personal mobile terminals, fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) networks, local-area networks (LANs), datacenters, metro networks, and backbone core networks. Therefore, high-capacity optical networks at 100 gigabytes per second (Gb/s) and beyond are essential for the infrastructure that supports the modern information and intelligence era.
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