Skip to Main Content
Nonlinear optical modulation combined with simultaneous photonic and RF resonance in an LiNbO3 microdisk modulator is used to create a self-homodyne photonic RF receiver. Carrier and sidebands are mixed in the optical domain, and the modulated optical signal is detected using a photodetector. The photodetector has a bandwidth matched to the baseband signal. It filters out the high-frequency components and generates the baseband photocurrent. Receiver operation is demonstrated by demodulating up to 100-Mb/s digital data from a 14.6-GHz carrier frequency without any high-speed electronic components. A bit error rate of 10-9 is measured for 10-Mb/s downconverted digital data at -15-dBm received RF power. Preliminary results of employing this photonic RF receiver in a short-distance Ku-band wireless link demonstrate the potential of using high-quality optical microresonators in RF receiver applications.