Abstract

To overcome the capacity crunch of optical communications based on the traditional single-mode fiber (SMF), different modes in a few-mode fiber (FMF) can be employed for mode division multiplexing (MDM). MDM can also be extended to photonic integration for obtaining improved density and efficiency, as well as interconnection capacity. Therefore, MDM becomes the most promising method for maintaining the trend of “Moore’s law” in photonic integration and optical fiber transmission. In this tutorial, we provide a review of MDM works and cutting-edge progresses from photonic integration to optical fiber transmission, including our recent works of MDM low-noise amplification, FMF fiber design, MDM Si photonic devices, and so on. Research and application challenges of MDM for optical communications regarding long-haul transmission and short reach interconnection are discussed as well. The content is expected to be of important value for both academic researchers and industrial engineers during the development of next-generation optical communication systems, from photonic chips to fiber links.

© 2021 Chinese Laser Press

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