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Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 2001 Jun;63(6 Pt 2):066616. Epub 2001 May 29.

Role of polarization mode dispersion on modulational instability in optical fibers.

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Centre de Mathématiques Appliquées, Ecole Polytechnique, 91128 Palaiseau Cedex, France.


We introduce the theory of modulational instability (MI) of electromagnetic waves in fibers with random polarization mode dispersion. Applying a linear stability analysis and stochastic calculus, we show that the MI gain spectrum reads as the maximal eigenvalue of a constant effective matrix. In the limiting cases of small or large fluctuations, we give explicit expressions for the MI gain spectra. In the general configurations, we give the explicit form of the effective matrix and numerically compute the maximal eigenvalue. In the anomalous dispersion regime, polarization dispersion widens the unstable bandwidth. Depending on the type of variations of the birefringence parameters, polarization dispersion reduces or enhances the MI gain peak. In the normal dispersion regime, random effects may extend the instability domain to the whole spectrum of modulations. The linear stability analysis is confirmed by numerical simulation of the full stochastic coupled nonlinear Schrödinger equations.

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