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A high-output-power 1550 nm polarization-insensitive semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) was developed for use as a compact in-line optical amplifier. A very thin tensile-strained bulk structure was used for the active layer and active width-tapered spot-size converters (SSCs) were integrated on both input and output sides. The SOA module exhibited a high saturation output power of +17 dBm together with a low noise figure of 7 dB, large gain of 19 dB, and low polarization sensitivity of 0.2 dB for optical signals of 1550 nm wavelength. For the amplification of optical signals modulated at 10 Gb/s in the nonreturn-to-zero (NRZ) format, a good eye pattern without waveform distortion due to the pattern effect was obtained at an average output power of up to +12 dBm. Additionally, good amplification characteristics were demonstrated for the signal wavelength range corresponding to the C-band.