We experimentally compare the performance of two key ultra-wideband discrete Raman amplifier structures, a cascaded dual-stage structure and an in-parallel dual-band structure, in fully loaded S-C-L band coherent transmission systems over 70 km of single-mode fiber. Our results show that dual-band discrete Raman amplifier with minimized backreflections can effectively avoid unstable random distributed feedback lasing, reduce the noise figure, and therefore improve the transmission performance for signals at shorter wavelengths, versus the cascaded dual-stage structure. The average noise figure for S-band signals is 6.8 dB and 7.2 dB for the dual-band structure and cascaded dual-stage structure, respectively, while the average S-band Q2 factor is similarly improved by 0.6 dB. Moreover, the cascaded dual-stage discrete Raman amplifier requires guard bands around the 1485-nm and 1508-nm pumps as the signal and pump wavelengths overlap, which results in a bandwidth loss of ∼10 nm and reduces the potential net data throughput to 28.6 Tb/s for 30-GBaud DP-16QAM signals. However, the dual-band structure can utilize the bandwidth more effectively, which leads to a higher estimated net data throughput of 31.2 Tb/s.
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Funding: H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (814276); Royal
Society (IEC\NSFC\211244); Engineering and Physical Sciences Research
Acknowledgments: The authors thank Socionext for providing DACs, Lumentum for providing modulators, and Coherent for providing pump lasers.