A semi-analytical simulation method (SASM) is proposed to evaluate the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of time stretched signals at the output of photonic analogue-to-digital converter (Ph-ADC) system. Analytical expressions of the signal at Ph-ADC output considering generic electrical signals applied to the electro-optic modulators of the Ph-ADC are derived. The contribution to the total variance of the received signal from the noise introduced by the electrical transmitter and receiver, and by the optical amplifier are derived analytically taking into account the pulsed nature of the optical signal. The proposed SASM shows excellent agreement of SNR estimates with the estimates provided by Monte Carlo simulation. This result is confirmed for variance dominantly imposed by the noise introduced by the electrical transmitter, by the optical amplifier and by the electrical receiver. A simplified approach is also proposed and compared with previous work. It is shown that mean power estimates obtained from this simplified approach are valid while the modulator is operating in the linear region and the signal is not affected by the frequency response of the electrical receiver filter. Additionally, it is concluded that the estimates of the noise variance due to the electrical transmitter are acceptable when a small signal analysis of noise along the Ph-ADC is valid.
© 2011 Optical Society of America
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