Abstract

This paper reviews optical injection locking (OIL) of semiconductor lasers and its application in optical communications and signal processing. Despite complex OIL dynamics, we attempt to explain the operational principle and main features of the OIL in an intuitive way, aiming at a wide understanding of the OIL phenomenon and its associated techniques in the optic and photonic communities. We review and compare different control techniques that enable robust OIL in practical systems. The applications are reviewed with a focus on new developments in the past decade, under the categories of ‘High Speed Directly Modulated Lasers’ and ‘Optical Carrier Recovery’. Finally, we draw our vision for future research directions.

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