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Time-stretched analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) have offered revolutionary enhancements in the performance of electronic converters by reducing the signal bandwidth prior to digitization. An inherent limitation of the time-stretched ADC is the frequency-selective response of the optical system that reduces the effective number of bits for ultrawideband signals. This paper proposes a solution based on spatio-temporal digital processing. The digital algorithm exploits the optical phase diversity to create a flat RF frequency response, even when the system's transfer function included deep nulls within the signal spectrum. For a 10times time-stretch factor with a 10-GHz input signal, simulations show that the proposed solution increases the overall achievable signal-to-noise-and-distortion ratio to 52 dB in the presence of linear distortions. The proposed filter can be used to mitigate the dispersion penalty in other fiber optic applications as well.
Date of Publication: June 2007