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Measuring the Modal Content of Large-Mode-Area Fibers

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4 Author(s)

Spatially and spectrally resolved imaging of mode content in fibers, or more simply, S2 imaging, is a new measurement technique for analyzing the mode content of large-mode-area (LMA) fibers. It works by spatially resolving the spectral interference that occurs when light in a few-mode fibers scatters into different modes that then propagate with different group delays. A scanning spatial filter in the form of a single-mode fiber probe coupled to an optical spectrum analyzer is utilized to provide both spatial and spectral resolution, and the data are analyzed via the Fourier transform of the optical spectrum. The wealth of data allows for imaging multiple modes simultaneously propagating in the fiber under test as well as quantifying their relative power levels. In addition, the ability to analyze mode images as a function of modal group delay allows distinguishing between discrete scattering at fiber surfaces and distributed scattering that occurs along the length of the LMA fiber. The all-fiber nature of the setup makes the measurement sufficiently stable to measure phase images of the higher order modes (HOMs). Because the method is interferometrically based, even very weak HOMs can be detected.

Published in:

Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:15 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

Jan. 2009

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