Polymer optical fiber for near infrared use



Using the empirical simulation that we developed to estimate loss spectra of amorphous polymers, we predicted the intrinsic loss spectrum of fluorine-containing polyarylate (FPAr) that should have a small attenuation loss in the near infrared region. Loss of FPAr is smaller than that of poly (methyl methacrylate), which is a typical optical polymer used as a core material in polymer optical fiber (POF), above 720 nm. FPAr was synthesized by phase transfer catalyzed polycondensation of 2,2-bis (4-hydroxyphenyl)-1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoropropane with isophthaloyl dichloride. Its glass-transition temperature (Tg) by DSC is 163°C. This indicates that FPAr has higher heat resistance than polycarbonate (PC) by about 10°C. A film of 100μm thick has over 85% transmittance from 330 to 900 nm. Values from a tension test are similar to those of PC. As a result, FPAr is expected to be a good core polymer for POF, because of its high Tg, good transparency, and good flexibility. Next, the POF made of FPAr was fabricated by a melt-flow spinning method. It had larger attenuation loss than predicted. The difference from the simulation was extrinsic loss caused by the fabricating process. Therefore, when a more suitable fabricating process is developed, loss of FPAr-POF can be decreased, so that it will be applicable to optical communications in the near infrared region. © 1993 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.