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Optical signal generation at millimeter-wave repetition rates using semiconductor lasers with pulsed subharmonic optical injection

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3 Author(s)
Yang Jing Wen ; Dept. of Electr. & Electron. Eng., Melbourne Univ., Parkville, Vic., Australia ; Hai Feng Liu ; Novak, D.

A new technique is presented and investigated systematically which generates optical signals at millimeter-wave repetition rates from a semiconductor laser, without the need for an intracavity saturable absorber. Optical pulses are generated from a long-cavity semiconductor laser with a repetition rate equal to its cavity resonant frequency by injecting short optical pulses at one of the cavity resonance subharmonics. A rate-equation model is proposed to explain the mechanism of this subharmonic optical injection method. Optical pulses with repetition rates of 35 and 56 GHz are generated using the proposed scheme from a semiconductor laser with a distributed Bragg reflector and a Fabry-Perot laser diode, respectively. The performance of the generated pulses is also evaluated in terms of detected RF power at the repetition frequencies, the subharmonic suppression ratio, phase noise, and timing jitter as a function of frequency detuning, injected optical power, laser bias current, and, finally, the subharmonic number. It is found that the generated optical pulses exhibit large subharmonic suppression ratio (>17 dB), large locking ranges >400 MHz, low levels of phase noise (~-93 dBc/Hz@10 kHz) and timing jitter (<0.41 ps over 100 Hz to 10 MHz), and large tolerance to variations in operating parameters

Published in:

Quantum Electronics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:37 ,  Issue: 9 )