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Standard Reference Material 2538 for Polarization-Mode Dispersion (Non-Mode-Coupled)



Paul A. Williams, Shelley M. Etzel, Jonathan D. Kofler


A temperature-controlled, single-mode-fiber-pigtailed quartz plate has been assembled as an artifact standard for polarization-mode dispersion (non-mode-coupled). The design parameters and performance of this device are discussed. The artifact, Standard Reference Material SRM 2538, provides an environmentally stable value of wavelength-averaged differential group delay (DGD) that is nominally 300 fs. This value is certified for any wavelength span of 50 nm or greater that is contained in the 1250-1650 nm window. A slightly higher accuracy number is also provided for wavelength-averaged DGD over the 1480-1570 nm window. Details of the certifying measurements and associated uncertainties are given.
Special Publication (NIST SP) - 260-145
Report Number


birefringence, DGD, differential group delay, PMD, polarization-mode dispersion, standard reference material


Williams, P. , Etzel, S. and Kofler, J. (2002), Standard Reference Material 2538 for Polarization-Mode Dispersion (Non-Mode-Coupled), Special Publication (NIST SP), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online],, (Accessed June 17, 2024)


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Created June 30, 2002, Updated October 12, 2021