Quantcast Receiver noise

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RECEIVER NOISE

Noise corrupts the transmitted signal in a fiber optic system. This means that noise sets a lower limit on the amount of optical power required for proper receiver operation. There are many sources of noise in fiber optic systems. They include the following:

  • Noise from the light source
  • Noise from the interaction of light with the optical fiber
  • Noise from the receiver itself

Because the intent of this chapter is to discuss optical detector and receiver properties, only noise associated with the photodetection process is discussed. Receiver noise includes thermal noise, dark current noise, and quantum noise. Noise is the main factor that limits receiver sensitivity.

Noise introduced by the receiver is either signal dependent or signal independent. Signal dependent noise results from the random generation of electrons by the incident optical power. Signal independent noise is independent of the incident optical power level.

Thermal noise is the noise resulting from the random motion of electrons in a conducting medium. Thermal noise arises from both the photodetector and the load resistor. Amplifier noise also contributes to thermal noise. A reduction in thermal noise is possible by increasing the value of the load resistor. However, increasing the value of the load resistor to reduce thermal noise reduces the receiver bandwidth. In APDs, the thermal noise is unaffected by the internal carrier multiplication.

Shot noise is noise caused by current fluctuations because of the discrete nature of charge carriers. Dark current and quantum noises are two types of noise that manifest themselves as shot noise. Dark current noise results from dark current that continues to flow in the photodiode when there is no incident light. Dark current noise is independent of the optical signal. In addition, the discrete nature of the photodetection process creates a signal dependent shot noise called quantum noise. Quantum noise results from the random generation of electrons by the incident optical radiation.

In APDs, the random nature of the avalanche process introduces an additional shot noise called excess noise. For further information on the excess noise resulting from the avalanche process, refer to the avalanche photodiode section.

Q.21 List the main types of receiver noise.
Q.22 What is the main factor that determines receiver sensitivity?
Q.23 For a reduction in thermal noise, should the value of the detector's load resistor be increased or decreased?
Q.24 What are two types of noise that manifest themselves as shot noise?




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