Free-space digital optical systems have demonstrated the capability to provide thousands of optical connections between optoelectronic chips. This dense concentration of channels creates substantial challenges in monitoring individual connections for diagnostic purposes without compromising performance. From the concept of stroboscopic techniques, we have designed and constructed a multichannel optical diagnostic tool that operates analogously to an electronic-sampling oscilloscope. The tool is economically constructed by the use of commercially available video cameras and video-enhanced personal computers. An integrated software application operates the tool and displays multiple channel waveforms. We demonstrate the oscilloscope-sampling optical waveforms of a two-dimensional optoelectronic modulator array operating at data rates from 0.5 to 4 Gbits/s.
© 1996 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: June 14, 1995
Revised Manuscript: October 30, 1995
Published: March 10, 1996
Rick L. Morrison, Steven G. Johnson, Anthony L. Lentine, and Wayne H. Knox, "Design and demonstration of a high-speed, multichannel, optical-sampling oscilloscope," Appl. Opt. 35, 1187-1194 (1996)