A photonic vector modulator architecture for generating pure quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) signals is presented. An electrical quadrature-modulated signal at microwave-millimeter-wave frequencies is generated from its corresponding baseband in-phase and quadrature components. In the proposed scheme, no electrical devices apart from the electrical tone oscillator are needed in the generation process. In addition, the purity of the generated signal is increased, and the hardware requirements are reduced when compared with previously proposed architectures so a highly compact low-cost architecture can be implemented. A pure 4-QAM signal has been experimentally generated at a carrier frequency.
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