On the noise properties of linear and nonlinear quantum-dot semiconductor optical amplifiers: The impact of inhomogeneously broadened gain and fast carrier dynamics

Alberto Bilenca, Gadi Eisenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present a detailed analytical model describing the noise properties of quantum-dot (QD) optical amplifiers operating in the linear and saturated regimes. We describe the dependence of the optical noise on the main physical parameters characterizing the QD gain medium as well as on operating conditions. The optical noise at the amplifier output shows a broad-band spectrum with an incoherent spectral hole due to the gain inhomogeneity. A coherent spectral dip stemming from noise-signal nonlinear interactions is superimposed on that broad-band spectrum. The broad-band incoherent component is also calculated using an approximate model which makes use of an equivalent inhomogeneous population inversion factor. The validity of the approximation is examined in detail. We also calculate the electrical relative intensity noise and observe a spectral hole corresponding to the spectral shape of the optical noise. The most important characteristics of the optical and electrical noise spectra are determined by the degree of inhomogeneous broadening and by the fast carrier dynamics of QD amplifiers. The fast dynamics causes a very wide noise spectral hole which has important potential consequences for detection of fast data and for all optical signal processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)690-702
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics
Volume40
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2004
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Noise
  • Quantum dots (QDs)
  • Semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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