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Polarization-mode dispersion measurements based on transmission spectra through a polarizer

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2 Author(s)
Poole, C. ; Crawford Hill Lab., AT&T Bell Labs., Holmdel, NJ, USA ; Favin, D.L.

Routine characterization of polarization-mode dispersion (PMD) in single-mode fiber, both at the manufacturing stage and in installed systems, requires an easy-to-implement measurement technique. One method that is particularly simple to implement involves counting the number of extrema (i.e., maxima and minima) per unit wavelength interval in the transmission spectrum measured through a polarizer (analyzer) placed at the output of a test fiber. In this paper, we establish accurate equations relating both the extrema density and mean-level crossing densities in such spectra to the expected value of PMD. These equations are used to measure several fiber samples, and are compared to measured values obtained with a commercially available test set. It is shown that measuring both mean-level crossings and extrema densities provides a simple means for establishing whether a fiber is scaling as √L (long-length regime) or L (short-length regime). Using Monte Carlo simulations, the accuracy of the fixed-analyzer measurements is examined as a function of the width of the wavelength interval over which measurements are made. In addition, the simulations indicate that fixed-analyzer measurements are quite robust with respect to the presence of polarization-dependent loss (PDL) in the span, an important consideration for measurements in amplified systems

Published in:

Lightwave Technology, Journal of  (Volume:12 ,  Issue: 6 )

Date of Publication:

Jun 1994

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