<p><a href="http://jon.osa.org/virtual_issue.cfm?vid=31">Feature Issue on Transmission in Optically Transparent Core Networks</a></p>An experimental investigation of optically gain-clamped Er-doped fiber amplifiers (EDFAs) for application in dynamic burst-switched networks is presented. We characterize the performance of optically gain-clamped EDFAs, in terms of the signal quality of surviving channels with respect to input power variations, as a function of the feedback cavity loss. This is carried out for both a single EDFA as well as cascaded EDFAs in a realistic network scenario, where bursts are asynchronously added and dropped at each node. We show that the optimum feedback cavity loss is not only a function of input power fluctuation and feedback wavelength but also the number of hops through the network.
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