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Kerr Nonlinearity Limits on Transmission Distance and Data Rate of In-Line Optical Amplifier Systems

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In-line optical amplifiers allow fiber transmission systems to have increased regenerative repeater spacing [1],[2]. Transmission distance and data rate are evaluated in terms of fiber loss, dispersion, and nonlinearity. Loss and dispersion limits, which are estimated through optical noise accumulation and waveform distortion, respectively, have already been discussed [3],[4]. Fiber nonlinear effects, however, have not received any extensive discussion except for a few limited cases [5]-[7]. This paper discusses the optical Kerr effect in in-line optical amplifier systems and derives two simple formulae to evaluate nonlinearity- limited system performance. Expected overall performance is also described by taking fiber loss, dispersion and nonlinear limits into account.

© 1992 Optical Society of America

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