Abstract

We report the fabrication and analysis of optical waveguides in Yb:YAG crystals using either proton or carbon ion implantation. Planar waveguides were obtained by implanting the whole surface of the crystals. Channel waveguides were defined using an electroformed mask with apertures of 10, 15, and 20 micrometers in width. The waveguiding properties of the structures were analyzed, showing good light confinement based on the transversal mode distribution and optical transmission measurements. The spectroscopic properties of the Yb ions in the YAG host are preserved after the implantation process, which demonstrates the potential of this technique for tailoring microcomponents for integrated optics applications. In particular, the Yb:YAG waveguides have the potential to operate as miniature lasers.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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