Semiconductor ring lasers nowadays are promising sources in photonic integrated circuits because they do not require cleaved facets or mirrors to form a laser cavity. Recently, some of us proposed to combine semiconductor ring lasers with on chip filtered optical feedback to achieve tunable lasers. The feedback is realized by employing two arrayed waveguide gratings to split/recombine light into different wavelength channels. Semiconductor optical amplifier gates are used to control the feedback strength. In this work, we investigate how such lasers with filtered feedback are influenced by an external conventional optical feedback.
The experimental results show intensity fluctuations in the time traces in both the clockwise and counterclockwise directions due to the conventional feedback. We quantify the strength of the conventional feedback induced dynamics be extracting the standard deviation of the intensity fluctuations in the time traces. By using filtered feedback, we can shift the onset of the conventional feedback induced dynamics to larger values of the feedback rate [ Khoder et al, IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett. DOI: 10.1109/LPT.2016.2522184]. The on-chip filtered optical feedback thus makes the semiconductor ring laser less senstive to the effect of (long) conventional optical feedback. We think these conclusions can be extended to other types of lasers.