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José Azaña

Télécommunications par fibre optique

Photonique ultrarapide, imagerie médicale

Research Interests


The research interests of Prof. Azaña span a wide range of topics in the areas of optics, photonics and microwave engineering, including the following:
  • Ultrafast photonics
  • All-optical signal processing
  • All-optical computing
  • Optical pulse shaping
  • Fiber-optics telecommunication systems
  • Measurement and characterization of ultrafast optical signals and photonic devices
  • All-fiber and integrated waveguide components and devices
  • Light pulse interferometry
  • Advanced signal processing analysis applied to optics problems
  • High-frequency microwave waveform generation and processing
  • Biomedical optical imaging 





Prof. José Azaña was born in Toledo, Spain. He received the Telecommunication Engineer degree (six years engineering program) and a Ph.D. (doctoral) degree in telecommunication engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), Spain, in 1997 and 2001, respectively. He completed part of his PhD research at the University of Toronto, ON, Canada (1999) and the University of California, Davis, CA, USA (2000). From September 2001 to mid 2003 he worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at McGill University Montreal, QC, Canada.
In 2003, he was appointed as an Assistant Professor at the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique – Centre Energie, Matériaux et Télécommunications (INRS-EMT) in the Montreal region. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 2006 and to Full Professor in 2010. His research activities are focused on the areas of optics, photonics and microwave engineering.


Scientific Activities


Recipient of the 2008 Young Investigator Award from IEEE - Photonics Society (formerly LEOS), recognizing outstanding contributions to photonics (broadly defined) by an individual prior to his/her 35th birthday, “for pioneer contributions on innovative ultra-fast optical pulse processing techniques, including temporal self-imaging (Talbot) effects, using all-fiber grating technologies.”
Recipient of the 2009 IEEE Microwave Prize “awarded annually in recognition of the most significant published contribution to the field of interest of the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society”, for the demonstration of ‘temporal imaging’ of ultra-wideband (UWB) microwave signals using an entirely electronic system.
Awarded with the “Extraordinary Prize to the Best Doctoral Thesis” from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), 2003.
Awarded with the XXII National Prize for the “Best Doctoral Thesis in Telecommunication Networks” from the Association of Telecommunication Engineers of Spain, 2002.
Guest editor of the special issue on “Signal Analysis Tools for Optical Signal Processing”, published by EURASIP Journal of Applied Signal Processing (July 2005).
Guest editor of the special issue on “Optical Signal Processing”, published by the IEEE/OSA Journal of Lightwave Technology (July 2006).
Recipient of five Strategic Project Grants (SPG), being Principal Investigator in three of these grants, from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). (2004 - 2010 competitions) 


Chairs, groups and networks


(Selected) Collaborations: 
  • Prof. Mohamed Chaker, Prof. Jean-Claude Kieffer, Prof. Roberto Morandotti, and Prof. Francois Légaré, INRS-EMT
  • Prof. Jianping Yao, University of Ottawa
  • Prof. Stewart Aitchinson, University of Toronto
  • Prof. Sophie LaRochelle, Université Laval
  • Prof. Lawrence R. Chen and Prof. David V. Plant, McGill University
  • Prof. Raman Kashyap, Ecole Polytechnique de Montréal
  • Dr. Greg Schinn, Exfo Inc. (Québec)
  • Dr. Bill Tsounis, Apollo Microwaves Inc. (Montréal)
  • Prof. Alejandro Carballar, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain
  • Prof. David J. Moss, University of Sydney, Australia
  • Dr. Michael Strain and Prof. Marc Sorel, University of Glasgow, UK
  • Dr. Luca Potì, CNIT - Pisa, Italy
  • Prof. Leif Oxenlowe, Denmark Technical University
  • Dr. Naum K. Berger and Prof. Baruch Fischer, Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Radan Slavík, University of Southampton, UK 
Prof. Azaña is a Researcher of the Canadian Institute for Photonics Innovation (CIPI), a Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). He is also a member of 3 Strategic Networks funded by FQRNT (Gov. of Quebec), namely COPL, Plasma-Québec, and SytaCOM.
Prof. Azaña is a member of IEEE and OSA.




Prof. Azaña has to his credit more than 450 publications in top scientific journals and leading technical conferences, including more than 120 publications in high-impact peer-review journals and various invited and co-invited presentations in international meetings. Some of his published works have been very highly cited by his peers. In what follows, a representative sample of his peer-review journal publications is presented (listed in inverse chronological order):

J. Azaña, “Ultrafast analog all-optical signal processors based on fiber-grating devices,” IEEE Photonics Journal, vol. 2, pp. 359-386 (2010). [INVITED]


Y. Park, M. Scaffardi, A. Malacarne, L. Potì, J. Azaña, “Linear, self-referenced technique for single-shot and real-time full characterization of (sub-)picosecond optical pulses based on balanced electro-optic spectral differentiation,” Opt. Lett., vol. 35, pp. 2502-2504 (2010).


M. H. Asghari, Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Complex-field measurement of ultrafast dynamic optical events based on real-time spectral interferometry,” Opt. Express, vol. 18, pp. 16526-16538 (2010).


Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Ultrahigh dispersion of broadband microwave signals by incoherent photonic processing,” Opt. Express, vol. 18, pp. 14752-14761 (2010).


M. Ferrara, Y. Park, L. Razzari, B. E. Little, S. T. Chu, R. Morandotti, D. J. Moss, J. Azaña, “On-chip CMOS compatible all-optical integrator,” Nature Commun. 1:29 doi: 10.1038/ncomms1028 (2010).


S. Thomas, A. Malacarne, F. Fresi, L. Potì, A. Bogoni, J. Azaña, “Fiber-based programmable picosecond arbitrary optical pulse shaper,” IEEE/OSA J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 28, pp. 1832-1843 (2010).


M. H. Asghari, C. Wang, J. Yao, and J. Azaña, “High-order passive photonic temporal integrators,” Opt. Lett., vol. 35, pp. 1191-1193 (2010).


Y. Park, M. Scaffardi, L. Potì, J. Azaña, “Simultaneous single-shot real-time measurement of the instantaneous frequency and phase profiles of wavelength-division-multiplexed signals,” Opt. Express, vol. 18, pp. 6220-6229 (2010).


F. Li, Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Linear characterization of optical pulses with durations ranging from the picosecond to the nanosecond regime using ultrafast photonic differentiation,” IEEE/OSA J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 27, pp. 4623-4633 (2009).


L.-M. Rivas, S. Boudreau, Y. Park, R. Slavík, S. LaRochelle, A. Carballar, J. Azaña, “Experimental demonstration of ultrafast all-fiber high-order temporal differentiators,” Opt. Lett., vol. 34, pp. 1792-1794 (2009).


Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Ultrafast photonic intensity integrator,” Opt. Lett., vol. 34, pp. 1156-1158 (2009).
[Featured in the ‘Newsbreaks’ section of Laser Focus World, June 2009]


S. Thomas, A. Malacarne, F. Fresi, L. Potì, A. Bogoni, J. Azaña, “Demonstration of a programmable fiber-based picosecond optical pulse shaper using time-domain binary phase-only linear filtering,” Opt. Lett., vol. 34, pp. 545-547 (2009).


Y. Park, T.-J. Ahn, J. Azaña, “Real-time complex temporal response measurements of ultrahigh-speed optical modulators,” Opt. Express, vol. 17, pp. 1734-1745 (2009).


M. H. Asghari, J. Azaña, “All-optical Hilbert transformer based on a single phase-shifted fiber Bragg grating: Design and analysis,” Opt. Lett., vol. 34, pp. 334-336 (2009).


F. Li, Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Group delay characterization of dispersive devices using a simple temporal intensity measurement setup,” IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett., vol. 20, pp. 2042-2044 (2008).


R. Slavík, Y. Park, N. Ayotte, S. Doucet, T.-J. Ahn, S. LaRochelle, J. Azaña, “Photonics temporal integrator for all-optical computing,” Opt. Express, vol. 16, pp. 18202-18214 (2008).


Y. Park, T.-J. Ahn, Y. Dai, J. Yao, J. Azaña, “All-optical temporal integration of ultrafast pulse waveforms,” Opt. Express, vol. 16, pp. 17817-17825 (2008).


L.-M. Rivas, M. Strain, D. Duchesne, A. Carballar, M. Sorel, R. Morandotti, J. Azaña, “Picosecond linear optical pulse shapers based on integrated waveguide Bragg gratings,” Opt. Lett., vol. 33, pp. 2425-2427 (2008).


I. Arnedo, J. D. Schwartz, M. A. G. Laso, T. Lopetegui, D. V. Plant, J. Azaña, “Passive microwave planar circuits for arbitrary UWB pulse shaping,” IEEE Microwave & Wireless Component Lett., vol. 18, pp. 452-454 (2008).


L. K. Oxenlowe, R. Slavík, M. Galili, H.C.M. Mulvad, A. T. Clausen, Y. Park, J. Azaña, P. Jeppesen, “640 Gbit/s timing jitter tolerant data processing using a long-period fiber grating-based flat-top pulse shaper,” IEEE J. Sel. Top. Quantum Electron., vol. 14, pp. 566-572 (2008).


K. Yiannopoulos, S. Thomas, J. Azaña, “Amplitude/timing jitter and peak-to-peak amplitude variation optimal rate multipliers,” IEEE/OSA J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 26, pp. 899-907 (2008).


J. Azaña, Y. Park, T.-J. Ahn, F. Li, “Simple and highly sensitive optical pulse characterization method based on electro-optic spectral signal differentiation,” Opt. Lett., vol. 43, pp. 437-439 (2008).


T.-J. Ahn, Y. Park, D. J. Moss, S. Ramachandran, J. Azaña, “Frequency-domain modal delay measurement for higher-order mode fiber based on stretched pulse interference,” Opt. Lett., vol. 33, pp. 19-21 (2008).


J. Azaña, “Proposal of a uniform fiber Bragg grating as an ultrafast all-optical integrator,” Opt. Lett., vol. 33, pp. 4-6 (2008).


F. Li, Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Complete temporal pulse characterization using phase reconstruction based on optical ultrafast differentiation (PROUD),” Opt. Lett., vol. 32, pp. 3364-3366 (2007).


T.-J. Ahn, Y. Park, J. Azaña, “Fast and accurate group delay ripple measurement technique for ultra-long chirped fiber Bragg gratings,” Opt. Lett., vol. 32, pp. 2674-2676 (2007).


Y. Park, M. H. Asghari, T.-J. Ahn, J. Azaña, “Transform-limited picosecond pulse shaping based on coherence synthesization”, Opt. Express, vol. 15, pp. 9584-9599 (2007).


Y. Park, T.-J. Ahn, J.-C. Kieffer, J. Azaña, “Optical frequency domain reflectometry based on real-time Fourier transformation”, Opt. Express, vol. 15, pp. 4597-4616 (2007).


Y. Park, J. Azaña, R. Slavík, “Ultrafast all-optical first and higher-order differentiators based on interferometers”, Opt. Lett., vol. 32, pp. 710-712 (2007).


N. K. Berger, B. Levit, B. Fischer, M. Kulishov, D.V. Plant, J. Azaña, “Temporal differentiation of optical pulses using a phase-shifted fiber Bragg grating”, Opt. Express, vol. 15, pp. 371-381 (2007).


J. D. Schwartz, J. Azaña, D. V. Plant, “A fully-electronic system for the time magnification of ultra-wideband signals”, IEEE Trans. Microw. Theory and Techn., vol. 55, pp. 327-334 (2007). 
[2009 IEEE Microwave Prize]


Y. Park, M. Kulishov, R. Slavík, J. Azaña, “Picosecond and sub-picosecond flat-top waveform generation using uniform long-period fiber gratings”, Opt. Express, vol. 14, pp. 12670-12678 (2006).


R. Slavík, Y. Park, M. Kulishov, R. Morandotti, J. Azaña, “Ultrafast all-optical differentiators”, Opt. Express, vol. 14, pp. 10699-10707 (2006).


J. Azaña and S. Gupta, “Complete family of periodic Talbot filters for pulse repetition rate multiplication”, Opt. Express, vol. 14, pp. 4270-4279 (2006).


J. Azaña, N. K. Berger, B. Levit, V. Smulakovsky, B. Fischer, “Reconfigurable generation of high-repetition-rate optical pulse trains based on time-domain phase-only filtering”, Opt. Lett., vol. 30, pp. 3228-3230 (2005).


M. Kulishov, J. Azaña, “Long-period fiber gratings as ultrafast optical differentiators”, Opt. Lett., vol. 30, pp. 2700-2702 (2005).


J. Azaña, C. Wang, L. R. Chen, “Spectral self-imaging phenomena in sampled Bragg gratings”, J. Opt. Soc. Am. B, vol. 22, pp. 1829-1841 (2005).


J. Magné, P. Giaccari, S. LaRochelle, J. Azaña, L. R. Chen, “All-fiber comb filter with tunable free-spectral-range”, Opt. Lett., vol. 30, pp. 2062-2064 (2005).


M. Kulishov, J. Azaña, “Ultrashort pulse propagation in uniform and non-uniform waveguide long-period gratings”, J. Opt. Soc. Am. A, vol. 22, pp. 1319-1333 (2005).


J. Azaña, “Wigner analysis of linear and nonlinear pulse propagation in optical fibers”, EURASIP J. Appl. Signal Proc. 2005, Issue 10, pp. 1554-1565 (2005). [INVITED]


J. Azaña, “Spectral Talbot phenomena of frequency combs induced by cross-phase-modulation in optical fibers”, Opt. Lett., vol. 30, pp. 227-229 (2005).


J. Azaña, N. K. Berger, B. Levit, B. Fischer, “A simplified system configuration for temporal imaging of optical pulses”, IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett., vol. 17, pp. 94-96 (2005).


J. Azaña, N. K. Berger, B. Levit, V. Smulakovsky, B. Fischer, “Frequency shifting of microwave signals using a general self-imaging (Talbot) effect in optical fibers”, Opt. Lett., vol. 29, pp. 2849-2851 (2004).


C. Wang, J. Azaña, L. R. Chen “Spectral Talbot-like phenomena in one-dimensional photonic bandgap structures”, Opt. Lett., vol. 29, pp. 1590-1592 (2004).


J. Azaña, N. K. Berger, B. Levit, B. Fischer, “Spectral Fraunhofer regime: time-to-frequency mapping by the action of a single time lens on an optical pulse”, Appl. Opt., vol. 43, pp. 483-490, (2004).


P. Dong, J. Azaña, A. G. Kirk, “Synthesis of fiber Bragg grating parameters from reflectivity by means of a simulated annealing algorithm”, Opt. Comm., vol. 228, pp.303-308 (2003).


J. Azaña, “Design specifications of a time-domain spectral shaping optical system based on dispersion and temporal modulation”, Electron. Lett., vol. 39, pp. 1530-1532, (2003).


J. Azaña, L.R. Chen, “General temporal self-imaging phenomena”, J. Opt. Soc. Am. B, vol. 20, pp. 1447-1458 (2003).


J. Azaña, R. Slavík. P. Kockaert, L.R. Chen, S. LaRochelle, “Generation of customized ultrahigh repetition rate pulse sequences using superimposed fiber Bragg gratings”, IEEE/OSA J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 21, pp. 1490-1498 (2003).


J. Azaña, P. Kockaert, R. Slavík, L.R. Chen, S. LaRochelle, “Generation of a 100-GHz optical pulse train by pulse repetition rate multiplication using superimposed fiber Bragg gratings”, IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett., vol. 15, pp. 413-415 (2003).


J. Azaña, “Temporal self-imaging effects for periodic optical pulse sequences of finite duration”, J. Opt. Soc. Am. B, vol. 20, pp. 83-90 (2003).


J. Azaña, L. R. Chen, “Synthesis of temporal optical waveforms using fiber Bragg gratings: A new approach based on space-to-frequency-to-time mapping”, J. Opt. Soc. Am. B, vol. 19, pp. 2758-2769 (2002).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Technique for simultaneously multiplying the repetition rate of multiwavelength optical pulse trains”, IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett., vol. 13, pp. 1358-1360 (2001). 
[Featured in WDM Solutions, April 2002]


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Simultaneous multi-wavelength real-time optical spectrum analysis”, Appl. Opt., vol. 40, pp. 3831-3842 (2001).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Temporal self-imaging effects: theory and application for multiplying pulse repetition rates”, IEEE J. Sel. Top. Quantum Electron., vol. 7, pp. 728 – 744 (2001).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, L. R. Chen, P.W.E. Smith, “Fiber Bragg grating period reconstruction using time-frequency signal analysis and application to distributed sensing”, IEEE/OSA J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 19, pp.646-654 (2001).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Reconstructing arbitrary strain distributions within fiber gratings by time-frequency signal analysis”, Opt. Lett., vol. 24, pp. 698-700 (2000).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Real-time optical spectrum analysis based on the time-space duality in chirped fiber gratings”, IEEE J. Quantum Electron., vol. 36, pp. 517-526 (2000).


J. Azaña, L. R. Chen, M. A. Muriel, Peter W. E. Smith, “Experimental demonstration of real-time Fourier transformation using linearly chirped fiber Bragg gratings”, Electron. Lett., vol. 35, pp. 2223-2224 (1999).


J. Azaña, M. A. Muriel, “Technique for multiplying the repetition rate of periodic trains of pulses by means of a temporal self-imaging effect in chirped fiber gratings”, Opt. Lett., vol. 24, pp. 1672-1674 (1999).


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