Advanced Materials

Complex Faraday Rotation in Microstructured Magneto-optical Fiber Waveguides

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Abstract

Magneto-optical glasses are of considerable current interest, primarily for applications in fiber circuitry, optical isolation, all-optical diodes, optical switching and modulation. While the benchmark materials are still crystalline, glasses offer a variety of unique advantages, such as very high rare-earth and heavy-metal solubility and, in principle, the possibility of being produced in fiber form. In comparison to conventional fiber-drawing processes, pressure-assisted melt-filling of microcapillaries or photonic crystal fibers with magneto-optical glasses offers an alternative route to creating complex waveguide architectures from unusual combinations of glasses. For instance, strongly diamagnetic tellurite or chalcogenide glasses with high refractive index can be combined with silica in an all-solid, microstructured waveguide. This promises the implementation of as-yet-unsuitable but strongly active glass candidates as fiber waveguides, for example in photonic crystal fibers.

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