The cross-phase modulation (XPM) effect in intensity modulation-direct-detection (IM)-(DD) optical fiber links with multiple fiber segments with different characteristics and optical amplifiers is investigated theoretically and numerically. A generalized model of the IM induced by an arbitrary number of channels through XPM is derived, compared to simulation results and its validity range is presented. Results show that the XPM-induced IM can be modeled as an intensity modulator driven by the intensity of copropagating waves. The frequency response of the intensity modulator corresponding to each copropagating wave is mainly affected by the walk-off parameter and fiber dispersion. When the walk-off effect is weak the XPM-induced IM is approximately proportional to the square frequency. In single-segment fiber links when the walk-off effect is strong the XPM-induced IM is approximately linearly proportional to the frequency and inversely proportional to the wavelength separation. Both theory and simulation show that the XPM-induced IM in fiber links with multiple optical amplifiers can be enhanced or reduced by properly arranging the dispersion characteristics in each fiber segment. In a nondispersion compensated amplified link and for weak walk-off effect, the total XPM-induced IM increases approximately with the square of the number of fiber segments and of modulation frequency. However, if the dispersion is compensated for within each fiber segment the total XPM-induced IM increases proportionally to the number of fiber segments and to the square frequency. Furthermore, it is shown that in fiber links with a large number of segments placing a single dispersion compensator in the last segment of the link leads to almost the same performance as for non dispersion compensated fiber link and is significantly worse than placing one dispersion compensator in each fiber segment as far as the XPM-induced IM reduction is concerned.
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