Optical signal processors: novel computer models and experiments

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Virginia Tech


The concept of incorporating optical fiber delay lines as signal processors is investigated. These signal processors are discrete-time filters implemented using optical fiber delay lines in the form of optical fiber couplers advantages of such a filter include the ability to eliminate the need for electro-optical conversion or at least postpone the conversion to a point where the electronics may be simplified. In addition, these optical signal processors exhibit all the advantages afforded traditional optical fiber systems. Furthermore, these devices allow high-speed signal processing rates greater than 1GHZ which rival the performance of the most advanced electronic counterparts available today.

In this thesis, optical signal processors are investigated in detail. First, the fundamental signal processing concepts and optical component background is discussed for the analysis of the devices are developed. Subsequently, various configurations of optical signal processors are discussed and novel computer models for these configurations using Z-transform theory are presented. Lastly, experimental verification is presented of the rudimentary models and a unique approach is presented that will allow the creation of optical signal processors with a flexibility never achievable before.