Abstract

A systematic experimental evaluation of polarization mode dispersion (PMD–) –induced polarization-dependent gain (PDG) in forward pumped Raman amplification in dispersion-shifted and in dispersion-compensating fiber was performed. Good agreement was obtained between the measured statistical parameters and the current analytical model for PDG fluctuation statistics. The probability distribution of the PDG was approximately Maxwellian within the range PMD >0.05 ps/km1/2. The interplay between PMD and gain fluctuations is discussed; random birefringence strongly reduces PDG fluctuations. However, the trade-off between reduction of the power penalties for PDG and increase of the penalties for PMD distortion precludes the use of PMD instead of source depolarization techniques for reduction of PDG.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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