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Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1652; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091652

Optical Transmitters without Driver Amplifiers—Optimal Operation Conditions

Institute of Electromagnetic Fields (IEF), ETH Zurich, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland
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Received: 22 August 2018 / Revised: 7 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 September 2018 / Published: 14 September 2018
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Abstract

An important challenge in optical communications is the generation of highest-quality waveforms with a Mach–Zehnder modulator with a limited electrical swing (Vpp). For this, we discuss, under limited Vpp, the influence of the waveform design on the root-mean-square amplitude, and thus, the optical signal quality. We discuss the influence of the pulse shape, clipping, and digital pre-distortion on the signal quality after the electrical-to-optical conversion. Our simulations and experiments, e.g., suggest that pre-distortion comes at the expense of electrical swing of the eye-opening and results in a lower optical signal-to-noise ratio (OSNR). Conversely, digital post-distortion provides operation with larger eye-openings, and therefore, provides an SNR increase of at least 0.5 dB. Furthermore, we find that increasing the roll-off factor increases the electrical swing of the eye-opening. However, there is negligible benefit of increasing the roll-off factor of square-root-raised-cosine pulse shaped signals beyond 0.4. The findings are of interest for single-channel intensity modulation and direct detection (IM/DD) links, as well as optical coherent communication links. View Full-Text
Keywords: optical communications; fiber optics communications; modulators; mitigation of optical transceiver impairments optical communications; fiber optics communications; modulators; mitigation of optical transceiver impairments
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Josten, A.; Baeuerle, B.; Bonjour, R.; Heni, W.; Leuthold, J. Optical Transmitters without Driver Amplifiers—Optimal Operation Conditions. Appl. Sci. 2018, 8, 1652.

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