Abstract

Photon-counting optical time-domain reflectometry (PC-OTDR) based on single photon detection is an effective scheme to attain the high spatial resolution for optical fiber fault monitoring. Currently, due to the spatial resolution of PC-OTDR being proportional to the pulse width of a laser beam, short laser pulses are essential for a high spatial resolution. However, short laser pulses have a large bandwidth, which would be widened by the dispersion of fiber, causing inevitable deterioration in the spatial resolution, especially for long-haul fiber links. In this Letter, we propose a scheme of dispersion independent PC-OTDR based on an infinite backscatter technique. Our experimental results—with more than 45 km long fiber—show that the spatial resolution of the PC-OTDR system is independent with the total dispersion of the fiber under test. Our method provides an avenue for developing long-haul PC-OTDR with high performance.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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