Abstract

The general solution for modes in an asymmetric planar waveguide with a homogeneous and isotropic chiral core is given in terms of a pair of parameters related to the eccentricity of the polarization ellipse for the transverse electric field. This formulation provides insight into the transition, with increasing chirality of the core, from TE/TM modes to right-handed and left-handed circular polarization modes. Mode polarization as a function of waveguide thickness and of frequency is discussed in detail. Beyond a mode-dependent maximum thickness (or frequency), the left-handed elliptical modes consist of a slow-wave component whose cutoff properties are examined. The limiting case of a symmetric waveguide is also discussed.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

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