Abstract

The use of uniform-waist cladded multimode tapered optical fibers is demonstrated for evanescent wave spectroscopy and sensors. The tapering is a simple, low-loss process and consists of stretching the fiber while it is being heated with an oscillating flame torch. As examples, a refractive-index sensor and a hydrogen sensor are demonstrated by use of a conventional graded-index multimode optical fiber. Also, absorbance spectra are measured while the tapers are immersed in an absorbing liquid. It is found experimentally that the uniform waist is the part of the taper that contributes most to the sensor sensitivity. The taper waist diameter may also be used to adjust the sensor dynamic range.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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