FLC News

Method of Making Elements Appear in Shortest Network Path


Laboratory: National Security Agency

Technology: In telecommunication networks, it is often desirable to change link weights to produce path changes in a certain desired fashion. As new services are added, certain sections of the network may become congested due to changes in the capacity of individual links. In such situations, administrators need ways to reroute traffic efficiently in case a high-capacity link suddenly becomes available. This invention is an algorithm and method for calculating a new shortest path in a network that includes a preferred network link/node not on the original shortest path.

This approach allows a network administrator to take advantage of underused links more effectively, by changing the administrative weights of as few other links as possible and by as small an amount as possible. The invention has applications for providing services in networks such as MultiProtocol Label Switching (MPLS) and Generalized MPLS/Automatically Switched Optical Networks (ASON), which are governed by protocols such as the Open Shortest Path First.

Opportunity: Available for licensing. The technology is at mid-stage development, and a technical briefing is available upon request.

Potential Applications:

  • Wireless MESH networks
  • MultiProtocol Label Switching (MPLS)
  • Automatically Switched Optical Networks (ASON)


  • Lowers costs by reducing the resources required
  • Increases implementation speed by reducing the amount of signaling required, thereby increasing speed of implementation
  • Helps maintain an almost constant view of the entire network; makes minimal weight changes on the identified links

Contact: Email the NSA Technology Transfer Office or call (866) 680-4539. Cite reference no. 1788.


FLC News