ABSTRACT: We develop a systematic method for characterizing semiconductor-laser phase noise, using a low-speed offline digital coherent receiver. The field spectrum, the FM-noise spectrum, and the phase-error variance measured with such a receiver can completely describe phase-noise characteristics of lasers under test. The sampling rate of the digital coherent receiver should be much higher than the phase-fluctuation speed. However, 1 GS/s is large enough for most of the single-mode semiconductor lasers. In addition to such phase-noise characterization, interpolating the taken data at 1.25 GS/s to form a data stream at 10 GS/s, we can predict the bit-error rate (BER) performance of multi-level modulated optical signals at 10 Gsymbol/s. The BER degradation due to the phase noise is well explained by the result of the phase-noise measurements.
Optics Express 02/2012; 20(5):5291-302. · 3.59 Impact Factor