Signal Processing in Photonic Communications (SPPCom)

13 July 2020 – 16 July 2020 OSA Virtual Event - Eastern Daylight Time (UTC - 04:00)

SPPCom covers the state-of-the-art advances in digital and analog (electronic and optical) signal processing techniques for all of these applications, to address the ever-increasing capacity demand, reduce cost per bit, and enable future photonic communication services. SPPCom brings together researchers and engineers from various areas to share their knowledge, cutting-edge research and visions.


The scope of this meeting includes the following two major categories: 1) digital and electronic signal processing, 2) optical signal processing.

Digital and electronic signal processing

  • Spectrally efficient modulation formats in coherent systems
  • Advanced modulation schemes for direct detection systems
  • Channel characterization and equalization
  • Polarization, clock and carrier recovery
  • Forward error correction
  • Signal Coding
  • Implementation of distribution matchers for constellation shaping
  • Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM)
  • Flexible and sliceable transceivers
  • Performance monitoring and signal characterization
  • Digital-to-analog and analog-to-digital converters
  • Real-time demonstration and field trials of high-speed electronic circuits and subsystems
  • Demonstration of high capacity transmission
  • Subsystems and digital signal processing for data center interconnects (DCI)
  • Subsystems and digital signal processing for space-division multiplexing (SDM)

Optical signal processing

  • Passive and active all-optical signal processing subsystems
  • Microwave photonic subsystems
  • Optical signal processing with photonic integrated circuits
  • Optical buffering, bit-, and label-processing subsystems
  • Optical packet and burst switching subsystems
  • Performance monitoring and signal characterization based on optical techniques

In addition, four areas of research are covered in more detail: 3) Radio-over-fiber and free space optical communication, 4) Access networks - passive optical networks (PON), 5) Machine learning (ML) in optical communication, and 6) Quantum communications.


Radio-over-fiber and free space optical communication

  • Digital, electronic and optical subsystems
  • Optical-wireless integration and multi-technology converged transmission systems
  • Visible light communication systems
  • Fronthaul systems based on analog radio signals
  • Ground-to-satellite/satellite-to-ground and inter-satellite optical communication

Access networks - passive optical networks (PON)

  • Advanced PON architectures (WDM-PON, TWDM-PON, OFDMA-PON, etc.)
  • Digital, electronic and optical processing for PON systems
  • Signal processing for optical backhaul/fronthaul networks
  • Signal processing for long-reach broadband access networks

Machine learning (ML) in optical communication

  • Channel estimation and equalization
  • Signal characterization and performance monitoring
  • Component and device characterization
  • Physical layer and network side optimization
  • Optical signal processing for neural networks

Quantum communications

  • QKD (signal processing, channel measurement, calibration, error correction and privacy amplification)
  • Quantum random number generation
  • Quantum digital signature
  • Quantum computing
  • Quantum neural networks



  • Alex Alvarado, Eindhoven University of TechnologyNetherlands
    Constellation Shaping for Optical Communications
  • Robert Borkowski, Nokia Bell LabsGermany
    Digital Signal Processing for High-Speed Passive Optical Networks
  • Francesco Da Ros, DTU FotonikDenmark
    Nonlinear Fourier Transform: Perpetual Research Topic or Future Game-Changer?
  • Tobias Fehenberger, ADVA Optical NetworkingGermany
    On the Impact of Finite-Length Probabilistic Shaping on Fiber Nonlinear Interference
  • Jose Jaramillo-Villegas, Universidad Tecnológica de PereiraColombia
    Title to be Announced
  • Alan Pak Tao Lau, Hong Kong Polytechnic UniversityHong Kong
    Application of Machine Learning in Optical Communications
  • Chuandong Li, Huawei Technologies Co LtdCanada
    Complexity and Performance Trade-off Consideration in DSP Algorithm Design
  • Gabriele Liga, UCLNetherlands
    Soft-decision Aided Turbo-product Codes for Optical Communications
  • Asuka Matsushita, NTT CorporationJapan
    Title to be Announced
  • Mikael Mazur, Nokia Bell LabsUnited States
    Lossless and Muxless Frequency Comb Modulation
  • Uiara Moura, Danmarks Tekniske UniversitetDenmark
    Machine Learning for Raman Amplifier Design
  • Kae Nemoto, National Institute of InformaticsJapan
    To be Announced
  • Christian Schaeffer, Helmut Schmidt Univ, Univ of FAF HamburgGermany
    Machine Learning in Quantum Communication
  • Stefan Wolf, Infinera CorporationUnited States
    InP-based Transceivers for Generation and Transmission of 800 Gbit/s Signals
  • Takaya Yamazato, Nagoya UniversityJapan
    Title to be Announced
  • Qunbi Zhuge, Shanghai Jiao Tong UniversityChina
    Efficient and Nonlinearity-tolerant Probabilistic Shaping for Capacity-approaching Optical Transmission Systems
  • Darko Zibar, Danmarks Tekniske UniversitetDenmark
    Learning to Communicate Over Nonlinear Fiber-optic Channel



  • David Hillerkuss, Huawei Technologies, GermanyChair
  • Koji Igarashi, Osaka University, JapanChair
  • Hany Elgala, State University of New York at Albany, United StatesProgram Chair
  • Neil Gonzalez, National University of Colombia, ColombiaProgram Chair
  • Ripalta Stabile, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, NetherlandsProgram Chair


Plenary Session

Ben Eggleton

University of Sydney, Australia

New Frontiers in Nonlinear Integrated Circuits

Recent progress in the development of nonlinear circuits is opening new possibilities for on-chip signal processing applications in optical communications, quantum technologies, microwave systems and sensing. My talk will overview major achievements with emphasis on hybrid circuits that combine high nonlinearity with CMOS functionality for high-performance and advanced functionality as well as massively reducing the size, weight and power requirements.

About the Speaker

Professor Eggleton is Director of the University of Sydney Nano Institute (Sydney Nano) and co-Director of the NSW Smart Sensing Network (NSSN). He has been an ARC Laureate Fellow and was founding director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Ultrahigh Bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems (CUDOS). He was previously at Bell Laboratories, where he was director of photonics devices research, before joining the University of Sydney again in 2003 as Professor of Physics. Professor Eggleton has an h-index of 93 (Google scholar) and has published 500 journal publications. He is a Fellow of both the Australian Academy of Science, Australian Academy of Engineering, IEEE, OSA and SPIE. Eggleton is Editor-in-Chief of APL Photonics.

Jelena Vuckovic

Stanford University, USA

From Inverse Design to Implementation of Practical (quantum) Photonics

Combining state of the art optimization and machine learning techniques with high speed electromagnetic solvers offers a new approach to “inverse” design and implement classical and quantum photonic circuits with superior properties, including robustness to errors in fabrication and environment, compact footprints, novel functionalities, and high efficiencies. We illustrate this with a number of demonstrated devices in silicon, diamond, and silicon carbide, with applications from optical interconnects to on chip laser driven particle accelerators and quantum circuits.

About the Speaker

Jelena Vuckovic (PhD Caltech 2002) is a Jensen Huang Professor in Global Leadership, Professor of Electrical Engineering and by courtesy of Applied Physics at Stanford, where she leads the Nanoscale and Quantum Photonics Lab. She is also the director of the Q-FARM: the Stanford-SLAC Quantum Initiative. Vuckovic has received numerous prizes including the IET AF Harvey Prize, Distinguished Scholarship from the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, Humboldt Prize, Hans Fischer Senior Fellowship, DARPA Young Faculty Award, Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award. She is a Fellow of the APS, OSA, and IEEE.

Marin Soljacic


New Physics from Photonic Systems

Nanophotonics offers unprecedented opportunities to mold the flow of light: novel material-systems can thus be implemented in which laws of physics can be tailored almost at will. I will describe this on a few recent examples from our work: non-Abelian topology, new framework for understanding nanoplasmonics, and AI in photonics.

About the Speaker

Marin Soljacic is a Professor of Physics at MIT. He is a founder of WiTricity Corporation (2007), LuxLabs (2017), and Lightelligence (2017). His main research interests are in artificial intelligence as well as electromagnetic phenomena, focusing on nanophotonics, non-linear optics, and wireless power transfer. He received numerous awards for his work, including: the Adolph Lomb medal from the Optical Society of America (2005), the TR35 award of the Technology Review magazine (2006), MacArthur fellowship “genius” grant (2008), Blavatnik National Award (2014). In 2011 he became a Young Global Leader (YGL) of the World Economic Forum.

Ian Walmsley

Imperial College London, UK

Advanced Photonics for Quantum Technologies

Hybrid light-matter networks offer the promise for delivering robust quantum information processing technologies, from sensor arrays to quantum simulators. New quantum light sources, operational circuits, photodetectors and quantum memories are driving progress towards build a resilient, scalable photonic quantum network.

About the Speaker

Ian Walmsley is the Provost of Imperial College London. As Provost, Walmsley serves as Imperial’s chief academic officer and provides the leadership to ensure excellence in Imperial’s core academic mission in education, research and translation. Professor Walmsley reports directly to Imperial President Alice Gast and together they oversee the College’s strategic direction. Prior to joining Imperial College London, Walsmley was the Hooke Professor of Experimental Physics at the University of Oxford, UK, and the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research. He led a research group in the areas of quantum and ultrafast optics, and was the Director of the Networked Quantum Information Technologies Hub of the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme. He was previously the Head of the Sub-Department of Atomic and Laser Physics at the University of Oxford from 2002 - 2009, and was on the faculty of the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester from 1988 - 2001, serving as its Director in 2000 – 2001. He received a B.Sc. in Physics from Imperial College, London, UK in 1980 and a Ph.D. from the Institute of Optics, in 1986.

Special Events

Plenary I Meet and Greet

Monday, 13 July; 10:00 - 10:30: Ian Walmsley
Monday, 13 July; 17:30 - 18:00: Ben Eggleton

Join your colleagues for a lively conversation with Plenary Speakers, Ben Eggleton and Ian Walmsley.

LGTBQ+ & Allies Meet & Greet

Monday, 13 July; 12:30 - 13:00

Grab your coffee, soda or beverage of your choice and join others attending the Advanced Photonics Congress for an informal virtual Get Together to discuss being LGTBQ+ in STEM and how we can work together to create a more inclusive community. Chair of the Optical Devices & Materials for Solar Energy & Solid-state Lighting topical Klaus Jäger, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie, will be on hand to share his thoughts and, along with OSA staff, to hear from you. For example we would love to hear:

  1. How can OSA can do better to help build a more welcoming and inclusive optics and photonics community?
  2. What kinds of programs, trainings or information could OSA explore to help continue to build on existing diversity and inclusion efforts?   
  3. How can everyone be a good LGTBQ+ ally? 

PVLED Virtual Coffee Time Networking Event

Tuesday, 14 July; 07:00 - 07:45 | Solar Energy with Rebecca Saive

Wednesday, 15 July; 07:00 - 07:45 | Perovskites with Klaus Jaeger

Thursday, 16 July; 07:00 - 07:45 | LED with JC Cheng

Grab a coffee, soda or beverage of your choice and join your colleagues to start the day off with a conversation on a variety of topics. 

Volunteer Engagement - OSA Meetings

Tuesday, 14 July; 10:00 - 10:30 EDT

Join with other attendees of the Advanced Photonics Congress for this this informal networking discussion about OSA meeting committees. Learn more about the roles, responsibilities and time commitment needed to serve on a meeting committee. OSA Meetings Council member Marija Furdek Prekratic, Chalmers Tekniska Hogskola and OSA Sr. Director, Technical Program Development and Strategy, Meetings & Exhibits, Naomi Chavez will be on hand to discuss serving on a committee and answer your questions. The session will include a brief overview and time for Q&A so come with your questions. You will be able to turn your camera and mic on or off to participate as you choose.

Volunteer Engagement – OSA Technical Groups

Wednesday, 15 July, 10:00 – 10:30 EDT

Join with other attendees of the Advanced Photonics Congress for this this informal networking discussion about OSA Technical Groups. Learn more about the governing structure and activities of OSA Technical Groups. Former chair of the Optical Material Studies Technical Group, Garo Khanarian, and OSA Director of New Business Development, Science Programming, Hannah Walter-Pilon will be on hand to share information from their experiences and answer your questions. The session will include a brief overview and time for Q&A so come with your questions. You will be able to turn your camera and mic on or off to participate as you choose.

Developing Profitable Products

Wednesday, 15 July; 12:30 - 13:30

Developing products that make money is the primary goal of most technology companies, but it’s not an easy task to accomplish. Many factors impact whether a product is ultimately successful or not. Learn an overview of the important fundamentals for developing products that will make money for your company.

Speaker:David Giltner

David Giltner is the author of, Turning Science into Things People Need, and is an internationally recognized speaker and mentor for early career scientists and engineers seeking careers in industry. He has spent the last 20+ years commercializing photonics technologies in a variety of roles for companies, including JDS Uniphase and Ball Aerospace. David has a BS and PhD in physics and holds six patents in the fields of laser spectroscopy and optical communications.

OIDA / OSAF Professional Development & Networking Virtual Lunch and Learn

Wednesday, 15 July, 12:30 – 14:00 EDT

Join us virtually for this unique opportunity for students and early career professionals, who are close to finishing or who have recently finished their doctorate degree, to interact with key industry and academic leaders in the community. Students interested in all career paths – from those seeking an academic position, to those wishing to start a technology business, to those interested government/public service, to those looking to translate their bench work skills to product development – are encouraged to register.  Students will “sit” at a table and have an opportunity to discuss their ongoing research and career plans with the attending leaders, while they will share their professional journey and provide useful tips to those who attend.

Plenary II Meet and Greet

Wednesday, 15 July; 16:00 - 16:30 

Get to know Plenary Speakers, Marin Soljacic and Jelena Vuckovic, at our second Meet and Greet. Join your colleagues for a lively conversation.

Perovskite Symposium Campfire Session 

Wednesday, 15 July, 16:30 – 17:30 EDT

At the conclusion of the Perovskite Symposium, join us for its campfire session, where attendees can share their experience with fellow attendees.

PSC Virtual Coffee Time Networking Event

Thursday, 16 July; 07:00 - 07:45

Grab a coffee, soda or beverage of your choice and join your colleagues to start the day off with a conversation on a variety of topics. 

Volunteer Engagement – OSA Publishing

Thursday, 16 July, 12:30 – 13:00 EDT

Join with other attendees of the Advanced Photonics Congress for this informal networking discussion about reviewing for OSA journals.  Learn how to become a reviewer, what to consider when evaluating a paper, and what editors are looking for in a good review. Optical Materials Express Editor-In Chief Alexandra Boltasseva, Purdue University and Optics Express Deputy Editor Svetlana V Boriskina, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as well as OSA Executive Editor Alison Taylor and Senior Publisher Kelly Cohen, will be on hand to answer your questions. The session will include a brief overview and time for Q&A so come with your questions. You will be able to turn your camera and mic on or off to participate as you choose.

2020 Symposia and Special Programming

An Interactive Tutorial on Optimization and Machine Learning for Nanophotonics

Tuesday, 14 July, 12:30 - 14:00

Workshop Presenter:
Jonathan Fan, Stanford University, USA

Inverse design algorithms are essential to pushing the performance limits of photonic systems.  In this interactive tutorial, we will discuss two emergent classes of inverse design.  The first is topology optimization based on the adjoint variables method, and we will discuss its mathematical framework and its application to metasurfaces.  The second is machine learning approaches to optimization, and we will give a detailed overview of discriminative neural networks, which can serve as surrogate electromagnetic solvers, and generative neural networks, which can learn and optimize fine geometric features in complex freeform structures.  We will have plenty of time for questions throughout and include demonstrations, where we will show how to execute these algorithms in practice.  If you would like to actively follow these demonstrations, please download the “GLOnets” and “Metagrating Topology Optimization” software packages at:

NOMA-PVLED Perovskite Symposium

Wednesday, 15 July, 08:00-12:30

Perovskites are one of the most exciting material classes for optical applications. As such, NOMA and PVLED have organized a joint symposium on the subject. The symposium will mainly consist of invited talks from renowned speakers and cover all relevant aspects of perovskite from a materials point of view as well as perovskite application in photovoltaics, light emission, and photodetectors. Each session will end with a general discussion, which allows the attendees to dive deeper into the topic than during usual conference session. Further, we plan to end the symposium with a camp fire session, where attendees can share their experience with their fellow attendees.

Symposium Organizers:
Klaus Jäger, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin, Germany
Steve Lee, Australian National University, Australia

Session 1
Michael Saliba, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany, Keynote
The Versatility of Multication Perovkites

Junho Kim, KAIST, Korea
Realization of Foldable Perovskite Light-emitting Diodes

Hairen Tan, Nanjing University, China
Highly Efficient Monolithic All-Perovskite Tandern Solar Cells

Christiane Becker, Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin, Germany
Shallow Nanotextures for Light Management in Monolithic Perovskite-silicon Tandem Solar Cells

Session 2
Wolfgang Brütting, Universität AugsburgGermany
Transition DipleOrientation as key Parameter for Light Outcoupling in Organic and Perovskite LEDs

Elizabeth von Hauff, Vrije Universiteit AmsterdamNetherlands
Screening Selective Transport Layers for Perovskite Photovoltaics with Spectroscopy

He Wang, University of Miami, United States
Structure-photophysics-function Relationship of Perovskite Solar Cells

Long Xu, Southwest University, United States
High Quality all Inorganic Halide Lead Perovskites Microlasers Pumped by Continuous Wave Lasers

Helge Eggers, KIT, Germany
Progress on Perovskite Solar Cells with All-Inkjet-Printed Absorber and Extraction Layers

Symposium on Short Reach Coherent

Wednesday, 15 July, 08:00-12:30

Coherent technologies are maturing, expanding to more and more segments of the optical network. In this symposium, we will explore the benefits that coherent can bring to the short reach, discuss challenges to be tackled, and discuss what needs to be done to make this transition happen. Bringing together top experts from academia and industry, we strive to provide both, an introduction to the topic and deeper insights for experienced experts.

Symposium Organizers:
David Hillerkuss, Huawei Technologies, Germany
Xiaolu Song, Huawei Technologies, China

Session 1 - Current Research
Andrew Ellis, Aston University, UK
Reducing DSP Complexity in Coherent Systems through Analog Solutions

Ming Tang, Huazhong University of Science and Technology HUST), China
Low Complexity Adaptive Equalizer for Short Reach Digital Coherent Optical Communication

Seb Savory, University of Cambridge, UK
Low complexity Coherent for Access Networks

Per Larsson-Edefors, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden
Challenges and Trade-offs in Real-time Implementation of DSP for Coherent Transmission

Tao Gui, Huawei Technologies, China
Self-Homodyne Coherent Detection in BiDi Transmission Structure for Short Reach Applications

Session 2 - The Industry View
Andrew Lord, BT, UK
An Operators View on Short Reach Coherent

David Welch, Infinera, USA
Coherent at the Edge Through Cost/power and Network Simplification

Jörg Peter Elbers, ADVA, Germany
Coherent Technologies for Short Reach Application

Tom Williams, Acacia, USA
Short Reach Coherent Transmission

Xiang Liu, Futurewei, USA
Coherent Technologies for Short Reach Metro and Access Networks