Silicon photonics is an increasingly active and exciting research topic that owes much to the excellent optical material properties of silicon. Crystalline silicon has a high refractive index (~ 3.48 @ 1.5 μm), a low loss transmission window between 1.2 μm – 6.7 μm, and a large third order optical nonlinearity (orders of magnitude greater than that of silica) making it a highly attractive material for photonic device miniaturisation. A new class of silicon waveguide, the silicon optical fibre, consists of a silicon core and a silica cladding and offers new possibilities within silicon photonics. To truly exploit the nonlinear properties of this fibre, control over its waveguiding characteristics is desirable.

© 2009 IEEE

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