Abstract

A magneto-optical data storage system utilizing single-mode fiber is capable of providing high signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) recording if laser noise sources are properly managed. In particular, mode partition noise (MPN) associated with use of a Fabry–Perot laser diode can be a significant problem in a fiber-based system. The various mechanisms leading to MPN as well as to laser phase noise are discussed in the context of a system constructed with polarization-maintaining fiber. The primary noise mechanisms include spurious fiber-endface reflections and errors in the quarter-wave plate on the recording head. An understanding of these effects is essential for fabrication of a fiber-based recording system with suitable SNR performance.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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