Abstract

We numerically study confinement loss in photonic crystal fiber (PCF) tapers and compare our results with previously published experimental data. Agreement between theory and experiment requires taking into account hole shrinkage during the tapering process, which we measure by using a noninvasive technique. We show that losses are fully explained within the adiabatic approximation and that they are closely linked to the existence of a fundamental core-mode cutoff. This cutoff is equivalent to the core-mode cutoff in depressed-cladding fibers, so that losses in PCF tapers can be obtained semiquantitatively from an equivalent depressed-cladding fiber model. Finally, we discuss the definition of adiabaticity in this open boundary problem.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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