In ultralong distance soliton transmission, the limit to single-channel bit rate is set by jitter in pulse arrival times. That jitter can be reduced through the use of narrow-band frequency-guiding filters, periodically distributed along the transmission line1,2. Because extra gain must be employed to offset the loss the solitons experience from passage through the filters, however, with fixed-frequency filters, amplifier spontaneous emission noise rises exponentially with distance. This tends to put a limit on the maximum useable filter strength, and hence on the practically attainable reduction in jitter. In earlier transmission experiments3, for example, the filter producing the minimum error rate was just strong enough to reduce the standard deviation in the timing jitter by about a half, in the trans-Pacific distance of ~10 Mm (10,000 km). In a recent paper4, however, we have shown how that limitation can be overcome by gradually translating the peak frequency of the filters with distance along the transmission line. That is, with such "sliding- frequency guiding filters," we create a transmission line that is opaque to noise for all but a small final fraction of its length, yet remains transparent to solitons. In this paper, we report the first experimental demonstration of high bit rate transmission using such strong, sliding-frequency filters.

© 1993 Optical Society of America

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