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A rigorous analysis of the power distribution in plastic clad annular core optical fibers

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Using Maxwell's field equations, an analytical investigation is presented of the relative power distributions in the different sections of a step-index plastic clad annular core optical fiber (ACF) operating in the infrared region of the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum. It is assumed that the fiber cross-section is made of two concentric circles, and the EM waves propagate through the annular region. The chosen fiber materials are widely used in low cost optical links. The wave equations are solved in the different sections of the fiber, and the general expressions for power in the core and the cladding regions are finally deduced. Plots are shown of the variation of fractional power (or the power confinement factor) in all the fiber sections against the propagation constants of sustained modes. The cases of three lowest azimuthal modal indices (i.e. meridional as well as skew modes) are described. It is observed that the confinement of power in the core section is increased for ACFs of larger cross-sectional dimensions. Also, a fairly uniform distribution of power over the sustained modes remains for large sized fibers, and this uniformity is greatly affected in ACFs of smaller dimensions. It is suggested that, because of strong evanescent fields, ACFs can be of potential use in chemical sensing. Apart from this, it is also presumed that these may be useful in the areas of communications. The improved mechanical strength adds the potentiality of ACFs.
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Keywords: EM wave propagation; Optical fibers; optical waveguides

Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: 1: Satellite Venture Business Laboratory, Faculty of Engineering, Gunma University, Kiryu 376-8515, Gunma, Japan 2: Department of Electronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Gunma University, Kiryu 376-8515, Gunma, Japan

Publication date: 2003-01-01

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