Abstract

Micromechanics-based wavelength-sensitive photonic delay and amplitude control modules are introduced for multiwavelength photonic applications such as hardware-compressed beam forming in phased-array antennas, timing-error compensation in high-speed long-haul fiber-optic communication networks, and pulse synchronization in photonic analog-to-digital converters and space–time code division multiplexed decoders. The basic delay structure relies on a single-circulator compact reflective parallel path design that features polarization insensitivity, independently controllable optical time-delay and amplitude settings, and fiber compatibility. Switched fiber time delays are proposed that use various micromechanical mechanisms such as mechanically stretched fiber Bragg gratings with comb-drive translational stages or magnetic levitation-based stretchers. Additional, shorter-duration variable time delays are obtained by means of the translational motion of external mirrors and the inherent delays in the zigzag reflective path geometry of the bulk-optic thin-film interference filter-based wavelength multiplexer used in our proposed design. Experiments are performed to test these concepts.

© 2000 Optical Society of America

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