Broadband Receiver Electronic Circuits for Fiber-Optical Communication Systems
Licentiate thesis, 2019

The exponential growth of internet traffic drives datacenters to constantly improve their capacity. As the copper based network infrastructure is being replaced by fiber-optical interconnects, new industrial standards for higher datarates are required. Several research and industrial organizations are aiming towards 400 Gb Ethernet and beyond, which brings new challenges to the field of high-speed broadband electronic circuit design. Replacing OOK with higher M-ary modulation formats and using higher datarates increases network capacity but at the cost of power. With datacenters rapidly becoming significant energy consumers on the global scale, the energy efficiency of the optical interconnect transceivers takes a primary role in the development of novel systems. There are several additional challenges unique in the design of a broadband shortreach fiber-optical receiver system. The sensitivity of the receiver depends on the noise performance of the PD and the electronics. The overall system noise must be optimized for the specific application, modulation scheme, PD and VCSEL characteristics. The topology of the transimpedance amplifier affects the noise and frequency response of the PD, so the system must be optimized as a whole. Most state-of-the-art receivers are built on high-end semiconductor SiGe and InP technologies. However, there are still several design decisions to be made in order to get low noise, high energy efficiency and adequate bandwidth. In order to overcome the frequency limitations of the optoelectronic components, bandwidth enhancement and channel equalization techniques are used. In this work several different blocks of a receiver system are designed and characterized. A broadband, 50 GHz bandwidth CB-based TIA and a tunable gain equalizer are designed in a 130 nm SiGe BiCMOS process. An ultra-broadband traveling wave amplifier is presented, based on a 250 nm InP DHBT technology demonstrating a 207 GHz bandwidth. Two TIA front-end topologies with 133 GHz bandwidth, a CB and a CE with shunt-shunt feedback, based on a 130 nm InP DHBT technology are designed and compared.


broadband amplifiers

data communication


distributed amplifiers.

receiver front-end

short-haul interconnects




ED, EDIT, Rännvägen 6, Chalmers
Opponent: Dr Arne Alping, Ericsson Research, Ericsson, Sweden


Stavros Giannakopoulos

Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Microwave Electronics

Multi-Tbps Optical Interconnects (MuTOI)

Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research (SSF), 2014-03-01 -- 2019-06-30.

Subject Categories

Computer Engineering


Communication Systems

Areas of Advance

Information and Communication Technology


Kollberg Laboratory

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Technical report MC2 - Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience, Chalmers University of Technology: 425


Chalmers University of Technology

ED, EDIT, Rännvägen 6, Chalmers

Opponent: Dr Arne Alping, Ericsson Research, Ericsson, Sweden

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