Optical Fibers and WaveGuides

ENG EC 568

Whether it be the FIOS™ internet connection at our homes, or fiber lasers powerful enough to cut metals (many automobile chassis are now made using fiber lasers), or the ability to perform endoscopic surgery and imaging, or doing frequency metrology with super-continuum sources (the basis of a few recent Nobel prizes)... the optical fiber has played a central, often dominant, role in many applications that impact the way we live. The main function of an optical fiber is to carry an electromagnetic (in the optical frequency) pulse over distances ranging from meters to greater than ten thousand kilometers without distortions. Fibers can also become smart light-pipes when they are intentionally designed to alter, temporally shape or amplify light pulses. Moreover, new developments in this field such as photonic bandgap fibers, fiber nanowires and higher-order mode fibers, are opening up new directions in science and technology. This course will introduce the optical fiber waveguide and its theory of operation. Specifically, the design and impact of the two most important properties in optical fibers -- dispersion and nonlinearity -- that govern the evolution of light in optical fibers, will be covered in detail. The latter part of the course will describe new fibers and fiber-structures that are active research topics today. One lecture of the course will include a tour of an actual, industrial-scale fiber fabrication facility. 4 cr.

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