We investigate numerically the optical field in the region immediately behind the input facets of dielectric step-index single-mode slab and fiber waveguides. Visualization of the intensity distributions gives insight into the formation of the fundamental mode and of radiation modes. For a more quantitative characterization we determine the amount of optical power and mode purity of the field in core vicinity as a function of propagation distance. The investigation assists in designing and optimizing waveguides being employed as modal filters, e.g. for astronomical interferometers.
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