Abstract

Polarization dependence in microbend gratings is an inherent problem, even in perfectly circular fibers, since antisymmetric modes are almost degenerate linear combinations of four distinct, polarization-sensitive modes. We demonstrate a novel fiber design that lifts polarization degeneracies of the antisymmetric modes to solve this problem. By intentionally exacerbating the polarization splittings, we achieve coupling to only the polarization-insensitive doublet, over wavelength ranges exceeding 100nm, thus demonstrating a device with practical usable bandwidths. This allows all previous applications envisaged with UV-induced long-period gratings to be realized with the significantly lower-cost microbend technology platform.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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