Physics-Based Deep Learning for Optical Data Transmission and Distributed Sensing
Research Project, 2021 – 2024

In order to cope with ever-increasing data traffic demands, recent years have witnessed an explosion of research interest in replacing handcrafted communication algorithms with machine-learning-based artificial intelligence (AI). However, prior work has largely resorted to massively overparameterized neural networks, resulting in unrealistic hardware requirements and unsatisfactory black-box solutions. This project will instead explore a new approach, specifically for optical fiber systems, that will not only lead to improved transmission performance, but also transform already-deployed communication fibers into intelligent sensors providing real-time information about various physical effects along the propagation path, e.g., mechanical stresses or vibrations. Our approach leverages well-established physical models and principles as a foundation, in particular the nonlinear differential equations governing the propagation dynamics. The proposed 4-year project is divided into four objectives/tasks: (i) receiver-side machine-learning models, (ii) transmitter-side signal shapers, (iii) data-driven optimization, and (iv) trade-offs between communication and sensing. The data used for training the developed solutions will originate from simulations supplemented by lab transmission experiments. Our target is to develop new AI-based solutions that combine, for the first time, high-speed optical data transmission and distributed sensing capabilities into a single DSP platform.


Christian Häger (contact)

Chalmers, Electrical Engineering, Communication, Antennas and Optical Networks


Swedish Research Council (VR)

Project ID: 2020-04718
Funding Chalmers participation during 2021–2024


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