Abstract

The field theory of guided waves in optical fibers with step-index profiles and in which both core and cladding are chiral isotropic media is developed. We show that both surface and semileaky modes can propagate in optically active fibers. To shed light on the guidance and leakage properties of chiral isotropic fibers we present a physical interpretation and several numerical results. The new leakage effect associated with semileaky modes is an important property that cannot be neglected in the analysis of chiral optical fibers but that, nevertheless, has been systematically disregarded in the literature.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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