Abstract

In high speed optical transmission networks, OSNR is the key optical performance parameter. We propose a novel technique for non-intrusive in-band OSNR derivation based on real-time pre-FEC bit error rate (BER) measurement from optical transponders, which exploits pre-measured and calibrated pre-FEC BER versus OSNR curves and multiple modulation formats to ensure accurate OSNR derivation over a wide range. We report a successful field trial of this novel in-band OSNR technique, in which we have demonstrated and verified the accurate OSNR derivation over both a 359 km field trial link and a live 727 km flexible grid optical link using 64 GBaud flexible rate optical transponders with modulation formats 100G DP-QPSK, 200G DP-16QAM, and 200G DP–QPSK. Compared with standard signal “on” and “off” measurement, an OSNR accuracy within ±1 dB was achieved for all three modulation formats. We also investigated the impact of fiber nonlinearity at different signal powers on the accuracy of this technique. It is shown that this novel technique provides reliable and accurate OSNR derivation for the optical signals operating in normal power regime making it suitable for practical network applications.

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