Fiber-Optic Communication, Wavelength-Division Multiplexing, Quantum-Dot, Semiconductor Optical Amplifier, Impairment Compensation, Coherent Detection


Over the last decade, rapid growth of broadband services necessitated research aimed at increasing transmission capacity in fiber-optic communication systems. Wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) technology has been widely used in fiber-optic systems to fully utilize fiber transmission bandwidth. Among optical amplifiers for WDM transmission, semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) is a promising candidate, thanks to its broad bandwidth, compact size, and low cost. In transmission systems using SOAs, due to their large noise figures, high signal launching powers are required to ensure reasonable optical signal-to-noise ratio of the received signals. Hence the SOAs are operated in the saturation region and the signals will suffer from SOA impairments including self-gain modulation, self-phase modulation, and inter channel crosstalk effects such as cross-gain modulation, cross-phase modulation, and four-wave mixing in WDM. One possibility to circumvent these nonlinear impairments is to use constant-intensity modulation format in the 1310 nm window where dispersion is also negligible. In this dissertation, differential phase-shift keying (DPSK) WDM transmission in the 1310 nm window using SOAs was first considered to increase the capacity of existing telecommunication network. A WDM transmission of 4 x 10 Gbit/s DPSK signals over 540 km standard single mode fiber (SSMF) using cascaded SOAs was demonstrated in a recirculating loop. In order to increase the transmission reach of such WDM systems, those SOA impairments must be compensated. To do so, an accurate model for quantum-dot (QD) SOA must be established. In this dissertation, the QD-SOA was modeled with the assumption of overall charge neutrality. Static gain was calculated. Optical modulation response and nonlinear phase noise were studied semi-analytically based on small-signal analysis. The quantitative studies show that an ultrafast gain recovery time of ~0.1 ps can be achieved when QD-SOAs are under high current injection, which leads to high saturation output power. However more nonlinear phase noise is induced when the QD-SOAs are used in the transmission systems operating at 10 Gbit/s or 40 Gbit/s. Electronic post-compensation for SOA impairments using coherent detection and digital signal processing (DSP) was investigated next in this dissertation. An on-off keying transmission over 100 km SSMF using three SOAs at 1.3 [micrometer] were demonstrated experimentally with direct detection and SOA impairment compensation. The data pattern effect of the signal was compensated effectively. Both optimum launching power and Q-factor were improved by 8 dB. For advanced modulation formats involving phase modulation or in transmission windows with large dispersion, coherent detection must be used and fiber impairments in WDM systems need to be compensated as well. The proposed fiber impairment compensation is based on digital backward propagation. The corresponding DSP implementation was described and the required calculations as well as system latency were derived. Finally joint SOA and fiber impairment compensations were experimentally demonstrated for an amplitude-phase-shift keying transmission.


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Graduation Date



Li, Guifang


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Optics and Photonics


Optics and Photonics

Degree Program









Release Date

November 2009

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)