The integrated semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) with a reflective electro-absorption modulator (REAM) is a promising candidate for the colorless optical network unit in a wavelength-division-multiplexed passive optical network (WDM-PON), due to its low chirp and wide bandwidth. However, 40 Gb/s operation of REAMs (bandwidth ≤ 20 GHz) still encounters severe intersymbol interference. Furthermore, Rayleigh backscattering (RB) and discrete reflections cause strong beat noise in WDM-PONs with single-fiber loopback configuration. In this paper, we present two novel techniques based on electrical equalization for a 40-Gb/s single-feeder WDM-PON based on SOA-REAM. The first method is to employ partial-response (PR) signaling and a noise predictive maximum likelihood (NPML) equalizer at the upstream receiver. The other one combines correlative level (CL) pre-coding with partial-response maximum likelihood (PRML) equalization. We experimentally demonstrate a 40-Gb/s uplink of 20 km using a 20-GHz SOA-REAM in a WDM-PON by both PR-NPML and CL-PRML. The results also verify the superiority of PR-NPML over the previously reported equalizers. Moreover, compared with PR-NPML, CL-PRML further improves the system performance. Experiments prove that the tolerance to beat noise and the receiver sensitivity are enhanced by 4 dB and 0.8 dB, respectively, at a bit error ratio of .
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