Raman gain spectrum, noise performance and corresponding nonlinear impact for co-, counter- and bi-directional multi-pump Raman amplifiers are optimized and compared in this paper. A fast numerical method, which can shorten the computing time more than 4 times by comparison to the classical fast method, for solving Raman amplifier propagation equation is proposed. Based on the geometry compensation technique, multiple shooting algorithms and hybrid genetic algorithm, an effective and fast algorithm for optimizing the design of various structures of multi-pump Raman amplifiers is proposed. The optimized results demonstrate that (1) the optimal efficiency and speed are increased significantly by using the proposed algorithm and method (2) although pure forward pumping scheme can improve more than 3-dB optical signal-to-noise ratio (OSNR) in comparison with pure backward pumping scheme, the latter costs less total power of input pumps and has great less nonlinear impact; (3) bi-directionally pumping configurations with proper forward pump source can obviously decrease the ripples of both gain and OSNR and equalize the OSNR tilt by comparing to pure backward pumping configuration; (4) there are multiple global or near-global maximums for signal gain spectrum in each pumping scheme and different global maximum in any pumping scheme has different OSNR performance; (5) different bi-directional pump schemes have different gain ripple and noise performance.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
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