Abstract

Optical frequency combs are garnering much attention in photonic applications related to optical communications, signal processing, and RF/microwave photonics, owing to the superior optical quality of the generated combs [1]. The excellent comb stability in frequency, both in terms of the absolute frequency fluctuations and the narrow linewidth on the teeth of the comb components, now make optical communication and signal processing applications that rely on the inherent parallelism of combs and excellent coherence possible. One key attribute that that is needed for some photonic applications is the production of the frequency comb with wide comb spacing (> 10GHz) in a small physical footprint, with excellent wall plug efficiency that maintains the high quality spectral characteristic of a stabilized comb source. This work reviews our work in the generation of compact, electrically efficient sources of ultrastable optical frequency combs using semiconductor diode lasers and highlights several examples of their use in coherent optical signal processing applications.

© 2013 IEEE

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