Impact of ADC parameters on linear optical sampling systems

T.H. Nguyen, M. Gay, F. Gomez-Agis, S. Lobo, O. Sentieys, J.C. Simon, C. Peucheret, L. Bramerie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


Linear optical sampling (LOS), based on the coherent photodetection of an optical signal under test with a low repetition-rate signal originating from a pulsed local oscillator (LO), enables the characterization of the temporal electric field of optical sources. Thanks to this technique, low-speed photodetectors and analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) can be integrated in the LOS system providing a cost-effective tool for characterizing high-speed signals. However, the impact of photodetector and ADC parameters on such LOS systems has not been explored in detail so far. These parameters, including the integration time of the track-and-hold function, the effective number of bits (ENOB) of the ADC, as well as the combined limited bandwidth of the photodetector and ADC are experimentally and numerically investigated in a LOS system for the first time. More specifically, by reconstructing 10-Gbit/s non-return-to-zero on–off keying (NRZ-OOK) and 10-Gbaud NRZ-quadrature phase-shift-keying (QPSK) signals, it is shown that a short integration time provides a better recovered signal fidelity. Furthermore, an ENOB of 6 bits and an ADC bandwidth normalized to the sampling rate of 2.8 are found to be sufficient in order to reliably monitor the considered signals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)362-367
Number of pages6
JournalOptics Communications
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017


  • ADC
  • Coherent communications
  • Linear optical sampling
  • Modulation
  • Signal monitoring


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