Electroabsorption Modulators for High Speed Ultrashort Pulse Generation and Processing

Martin GUY  Stanislav CHERNIKOV  Roy TAYLOR  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E81-C    No.2    pp.169-174
Publication Date: 1998/02/25
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Issue on Ultrashort Optical Pulse Technologies and their Applications)
electroabsorption modulators,  nonlinear pulse compression,  dispersion mapping,  demultiplexing,  

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Electroabsorption modulators are high speed devices that are rapidly being commercialised and finding applications in a number of areas, particularly in telecommunications. A CW laser diode modulated by an electroabsorption modulator constitutes an extremely stable, robust and simple source of high quality, high repetition rate ultrashort optical pulses. In this paper we describe the capabilities and limitations of such pulse sources, and present nonlinear pulse compression and manipulation techniques that allow one to overcome these limitations. We also present the design of a new class of comb-like dispersion-profiled fibre compressor. Such a compressor is easily fabricated from commercially available fibres and represents a simple yet powerful way of extending the range of pulse durations available. As the electroabsorption modulator is essentially a high speed switch it is also applicable to optical processing problems, and we report the application of such a device to demultiplexing.