Optical time domain reflectometry with low noise waveguide-coupled superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors

Schuck, C.; Pernice, W. H. P.; Ma, X.; Tang, H. X.
May 2013
Applied Physics Letters;5/13/2013, Vol. 102 Issue 19, p191104
Academic Journal
We demonstrate optical time domain reflectometry over 200 km of optical fiber using low-noise NbTiN superconducting single-photon detectors integrated with Si3N4 waveguides. Our small detector footprint enables high timing resolution of 50 ps and a dark count rate of 3 Hz with unshielded fibers, allowing for identification of defects along the fiber over a dynamic range of 37.4 dB. Photons scattered and reflected back from the fiber under test can be detected in free-running mode without showing dead zones or other impairments often encountered in semiconductor photon-counting optical time domain reflectometers.


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