- For the first time a practical control analysis of semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) dynamics has been conducted with implementation design considerations, based on a newly developed SOA electrical Spice model. It can be used for optimal design of SOA driver and control circuits within any existing optical network. In addition, a novel dual-control loop is designed and simulated. The two control loops overcome both fast (transient) and slow (steady-state) phenomena. Simulation results of the controlled SOA dynamics are presented, with an implementation example of an SOA high-speed optical switch driver. For optical switching the SOA driver uses a pre-impulse-step injected current as the switching signal. The developed Spice SOA electrical model is used for the predistortion optimization. The simulation results show that an ultrafast driver and control circuit seems feasible. It is also shown that the SOA can operate as a variable attenuator. A dynamic time constant of ~1–2 nsec is achievable using the predistortion scheme. The design and analysis here show that the SOA technology can be used as the switch-fabric core of a bufferless optical network with switching on packet timescales.