Abstract

Two methods to measure the cladding diameter of single-mode fibers are presented. The first method is based on an interference fringe measurement technique. Interference fringe spacing at two different planes is measured to determine the cladding diameter of the fiber. The theory of the fringe formation in the interferometeric arrangement using single-mode fibers is discussed. It is theoretically shown that the far-field overlapping Gaussian field distribution from the fibers shifts the position of the fringe maxima and minima. As a special case of unit fringe visibility the minima positions do not shift, whereas the maxima positions are shifted. In the case of a Lloyd mirror arrangement it is shown that fringes can be obtained from a rough surface as well. A lens is used in the second method to image the two identical point sources that cause the interference. Through the use of the magnification and spacing of the images, the cladding diameter is estimated. It is shown that the accuracy of the fiber cladding-diameter measurement can be enhanced by generating multiple point sources. Consistent results of the fiber cladding diameter have been obtained with the proposed methods. Fiber cladding-diameter measurements with a standard error of less than 0.15 μm can be achieved.

© 1993 Optical Society of America

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