We experimentally and theoretically study the propagation of a light pulse superposed on a continuous wave background in a highly doped erbium fiber pumped at . We observe a transition from subluminal to superluminal propagation with the pulse bandwidth. Furthermore, an improvement of the pulse delay and pulse distortion when increasing the pulse peak and keeping constant the background power is reported. These results are due to the relation between the pump-broadened transparency hole (induced by the coherent population oscillations) and the competition between gain and absorption along the fiber.
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