Photonic microwave frequency divider with a tunable division ratio and harmonic suppression capability

Hao Chen, Erwin Chan

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A photonic microwave frequency divider that is capable to realise tunable high order frequency division, is presented. It is based on injecting an RF phase modulated optical signal into an off-the-shelf DFB laser operating at period-N state. Optical frequency components with a frequency separation of 1/N times the input RF signal frequency are generated by the DFB laser. An optical bandpass filter can be employed to select two optical frequency components to be detected by a photodetector to obtain a divide-by-N RF signal without harmonic components. The proposed frequency divider can be operated over a wide frequency range and has high reconfigurability as it is free of electrical components. Experimental results demonstrate the realisation of frequency division operation with a tunable 1/2 to 1/5 division ratio for different input RF signal frequencies of 8 to 20 GHz by adjusting the DFB laser forward bias current. Over 35 dB harmonic component suppression is demonstrated. A proof-of-concept experiment is also set up to show the frequency divider based on an optically injected semiconductor laser is capable to operate at a high input RF signal frequency of 50 GHz and has a tunable high order division ratio of 1/2 to 1/8.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34021-34033
Number of pages13
JournalOptics Express
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sept 2022


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