RSoft Application Gallery Note: Polarization Mode Dispersion (PMD) Induced Penalties in High Bit-Rate Systems

Tool Used: OptSim

This example demonstrates the effect that Polarization Mode Dispersion (PMD) has on signal propagation in a fiber and on system performance. The setup is shown below:

effect that Polarization Mode Dispersion

For this setup, a transmitter consists of a 40-Gbps PRBS generator, CW Laser source at 1550 nm, electrical driver, external modulator, and optical power normalizer. A 40-Gbps RZ-modulated signal then is launched into a fiber span. The output from the fiber span is inserted into a receiver. PMD is a statistical effect caused by randomly varying fiber birefringence, therefore the simulation results will be different for different settings of the random seed parameter. PMD causes differential group delay (DGD) between x- and y- polarization components during propagation in fiber, and, hence, eye distortion at the receiver. One can run a parameter scan to obtain DGD and BER/Q for different values of the PMD coefficient and different random seeds. After the simulation run is finished one can double-click on various analysis blocks to view the signal plot, eye diagram, DGD, Stokes parameters on Poincare Sphere, and BER/Q values as shown in the following series of figures: 

Figure 1
Figure 2
Figure 3
Figure 4

Let us take a look at two particular runs: 

(a) best case for low-PMD fiber; Figure below shows corresponding signal plots and eye diagrams. Corresponding Q-factor (and BER) is 16.0 dB (1.0E-10). 

corresponding signal plots and eye diagrams

(b) worst case for high-PMD fiber. Figure below shows corresponding signal plots and eye diagrams. Corresponding Q-factor (and BER) is 9.0 dB (2.5E-3).

corresponding signal plots and eye diagrams

In conclusion, the PMD-induced differential group delay degrades system performance with penalties more severe at higher bit rates and higher PMD coefficients in fibers.