Mode-locked lasers are commonly used in carrier-wave signal generation systems because of their excellent phase noise performance. Owing to the importance of this key parameter, this study presents a like-for-like comparison of the noise performance of the passive mode-locked regime of two devices fabricated with different material gain systems, one quantum well and the other quantum dot (QD), both with a monolithic all-active two-section mode-locked structure. Two important factors are identified as having a significant effect on the noise performance, the RF linewidth of the first harmonic and the shape of the noise pedestals, both depending on the passive mode-locked bias conditions. Nevertheless, the dominant contribution of the RF linewidth to the phase noise, which is significantly narrower for the QD laser, makes this material more suitable for optical generation of low-noise millimetre-wave carrier frequencies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering