Abstract

We present a technique for measuring the chromatic dispersion of short-length (<1m) optical devices using unbalanced spectral interferometry and a virtual reference path. The technique combines the speed and ease of measurement of unbalanced spectral interferometry with the accuracy of balanced spectral interferometry. We demonstrate measurement accuracy for group delay and the dispersion-length product of 103ps/m (<0.0001% relative error) and 105ps/nm (<0.5% relative error), respectively. Measurement precision is demonstrated to be 105ps/nm (<0.15% relative deviation). We validate the technique via measurement of well-known dispersion standards.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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Figures (5)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Measurement setup for virtual referencing of a cavity.

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

Virtually referenced interference pattern balanced at λ0.

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

Comparison between simulation and virtual reference measurement of group delay on a 42 cm length of SMF28. The RMS error is with respect to the simulation.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

Dispersion parameter measurements made via virtual referencing of a 42 cm length of SMF28 and single-arm three-wave measurements (previously reported in [9]) on a 39.5 cm length of SMF28. The RMS errors are with respect to the simulation.

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

Dispersion parameter measurements on dispersion compensating fiber (DCF). The virtual reference measurement was made on a 0.25 m length of DCF, the single arm three-wave measurement (previously reported in [9]) was made on a 0.165 m length of DCF and the Agilent 86037C measurement was made on a 91.5 m length of DCF. The standard deviation is with respect to linear fit.

Equations (4)

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τg(λ0)=Lvirtual/c.
Ireal=|U0+U1|2=I0+I1cos(2βLr),
Ivirtual=|V0+V1|2=I2+I3cos(2k0Lv),
ISO=I12{cos(2[βLr+k0Lv])+cos(2[βLrk0Lv)]}.

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