In this paper, we present a review on silicon-based nonlinear devices for all optical nonlinear processing of complex telecommunication signals. We discuss some recent developments achieved by our research group, through extensive collaborations with academic partners across Europe, on optical signal processing using silicon-germanium and amorphous silicon based waveguides as well as novel materials such as silicon rich silicon nitride and tantalum pentoxide. We review the performance of four wave mixing wavelength conversion applied on complex signals such as Differential Phase Shift Keying (DPSK), Quadrature Phase Shift Keying (QPSK), 16-Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM) and 64-QAM that dramatically enhance the telecom signal spectral efficiency, paving the way to next generation terabit all-optical networks.
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