Abstract

Optical fibers and specialty waveguides are the bases of the majority of today's telecommunication, biomedical, sensing, and light-delivery applications. Modal analysis plays an important role in optimizing the optical performance of these fibers when they are integrated with optical systems. We present a full vectorial modal theoretical analysis of specialty cylindrical symmetric fibers with arbitrary index profiles, using a staircase approximation and scattering matrix approach with no constraints on the refractive index profile. We demonstrate the generality of this method by investigating the modal characteristics of two specialty fibers: graded-index fiber and concentric-shell multicore fiber. The calculated modal effective indices for the graded-index fiber are compared with those calculated by the WKB method, stressing the main differences between the scalar and vectorial approaches. Using the same approach, we calculate the Bragg grating response of a holographic grating written in the guiding regions of a concentric-shell fiber and compared them with experimental measurements.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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