We address one of the major penalties associated with the transmission of optical solitons in fiber-optic networks: the intrachannel interactions between pulses in a single channel strong dispersion-managed transmission link. We calculate the interaction length between sets of two and three pulses as a function of the ratio of dissimilar peak powers of interacting solitons by means of a variational approach to the generalized nonlinear Schrödinger equation describing the evolution of optical soliton pulses. We find a maximum of this colliding length for specific values of pulse energies. The effect of higher-order perturbation terms, such as third-order dispersion, Raman scattering, and self-steepening, shows an enhancement of the interaction distance in a broad range of dispersion difference values. We conclude that the transmission characteristics of soliton trains may be improved by means of using specific values of unequal energies and taking into account higher-order correction terms.
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9 December 2016: A correction was made to the pagination.
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