The exploitation of orbital angular momentum modes for mode division multiplexing (MDM) has reached a new record transmission, one that simultaneously addresses distance and wavelength multiplexing as well as MDM. The excellent summary of previous demonstrations in MDM puts this new record into perspective vis-à-vis the heavy activity in this field over the last four years. The authors highlight the trade-offs in signal processing complexity that are available in fibers with low-crosstalk between mode groups – the raison d’etre
for working with orbital angular momentum modes. This demonstration used multi-input, multi-output processing with very moderate complexity, only 16 equalizers with 25 taps each for their 16 Gbaud transmission. Their ring core fiber exhibited loss on the order of 0.2 dB/km, on a par with mature single mode fibers. The unamplified 100 km demonstration leaves the door open for future work in amplified links that could push the capacity-distance product.
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