The erbium-doped fibre amplifier (EDFA) has developed at a startling speed since its announcement in 1987. The EDFA is now established as a key component for future highspeed, silica-based optical fibre communication networks operating at a wavelength of 1.55μm. Its major attributes are high gain, high efficiency, low noise and potential multichannel operation with low interchannel crosstalk. Expected applications are as fibre power-amplifiers in transmission systems and distribution networks, as signal repeaters in point-to-point optical links, as fibre pre-amplifiers in amplifier/receiver combinations and as distributed fibre amplifiers for soliton propagation.

© 1992 Optical Society of America

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