Fiber Optics Laboratory
Catalog Data: 

Graduate Course Information


ECE 587 - Fiber Optics Laboratory

Credits: 3.00

Course Website:

UA Catalog Description:

Course Assessment:

Homework:  6-7assignments

Project:  8 lab experiments

Exams:  1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam

Grading Policy:

15% Homework                                   

45% Lab Reports                                  

40% Final Exam                                   

Course Summary:

This course is designed to familiarize students with the physical properties of fiber optic components and systems. There will typically be two lectures/week during the scheduled class meeting times, and a total of eight lab experiments. I will also try to set up demonstration experiments for other topics not formally covered by an assigned lab. The lectures should provide sufficient background material for the lab experiments as well as a good foundation in fiber systems. During the first week of classes you should form a lab group of approximately three students, and decide on a meeting time. Check with the TA about available meeting times. Each lab experiment will be set up for approximately 8 class days. This will allow some time to repeat certain parts of a lab that you are unsure of or wish to check. There will be a final exam covering both lecture and lab material.

Graduate Standing


Required Text: G. Keiser, ``Optical Fiber Communications,’’ 3rd Ed., McGraw-Hill, 2000

The following texts are recommended

  1. C. R. Pollock, ``Fundamentals of Optoelectronics,’’ Irwin, 1995.
  2. Ghatak and K. Thyagarajan, ``Introduction to Fiber Optics,’’ Cambridge University Press, 1998.
  3. A. Yariv, ``Optical Electronics in Modern Communications, 5th Ed. Oxford 1997.
  4. G. P. Agrawal, ``Fiber Optic Communication Systems,’’ 3rd Ed. Wiley Inter-Science, 2002


Course Topics: 

1.     Review of beam propagation characteristics in optical waveguides and fiber optic characteristics

2.     Gaussian Beam propagation and transformation through optical systems

3.     Summary of beam propagation characteristics in planar waveguides; even/odd modes; symmetric/asymmetric waveguides

4.     Summary of beam propagation characteristics in cylindrical waveguides; Cut-off conditions; relative propagation constant; mode approximation for MM fibers; TE, TM; HE, EH; LP modes;

5.     Power distributions in fiber core/cladding

6.     Fiber properties: intro to dispersion; attenuation, OTDR measurements

7.     Fiber coupling: fiber-fiber alignment; source fiber coupling, overlap integrals

8.     Analysis and use of GRIN lenses in fiber optic systems

9.     Properties of polarization preserving fibers

10.  Detector characteristics

11.  Receivers and noise

12.  Laser diodes; threshold conditions; modes; modulation; noise characteristics

13.  Optical transmitters: basic circuits, noise

14.  System Analysis: Power Budgets; rise time budgets

15.  WDM systems: crosstalk, channel separation, arrayed waveguide gratings

16.  Fiber Bragg gratings, AWGs, Optical circulators analysis and applications

17.  Digital Systems: SNR, BER, jitter, skew, evaluation using eye diagrams

18.  Fiber amplifiers- Er doped fiber, Raman Amplifiers, Semiconductor Optical Amplifiers

19.  Fiber optic sensors; intensity, interferometric, rotational

20.  Optical coherence tomography systems

21.  Fiber image guides, transmission of images through optical fibers

Class/Laboratory Schedule: 

Lecture:  150 minutes/week

Laboratory:  Open Schedule (8 labs/semester)

Prepared by: 
Raymond Kostuk
Prepared Date: 
April 2013

University of Arizona College of Engineering