Abstract

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Ethernet in the First Mile task force, IEEE 802.3ah, is concentrating on a standard aimed at making optical access affordable and ubiquitous. Subscribers will be able to get 1-Gbit/s bidirectional capacity to the central offices. This gigabit passive-optical-network (PON) system implies the use of low-cost optoelectronics and standard single-mode fibers. Historically, dispersion of single-mode fibers in these systems has not been an issue, because of the relatively low data rates and limited distance. However, for optical Ethernet access, distances up to 20 km and extended temperature ranges are being considered. Therefore there are now system limitations resulting from various dispersion penalties. Here we explore the fundamental issues of dispersion and its effect on the access network from a statistical point of view.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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