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Fabrication of glass photonic crystal fibers with a die-cast process

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Abstract

We demonstrate a novel method for the fabrication of glass photonic crystal fibers (PCFs) with a die-cast process. SF6 glass is used as the material for PCFs, and the die is made of heat-resisting alloy steel, whose inner structure matches the PCF's structure. The die is put vertically in the vessel with SF6 glass, and the vacuum hose is attached to the top of the die. The die and glass are put in the furnace to heat at 870  K. The die is slowly filled with the softening glass under vacuum conduction until it is full. It is kept in the furnace to anneal at a rate of 20 K∕h to remove the thermal stress that could lead to cracks. The outer tube of the die is taken apart when its temperature is close to room temperature, and the fused glass bundle is etched in an acidic solution to remove the heat-resisting alloy steel rods. Thus, the etched bundle is ready to use as a PCF preform. The PCF is observed in the generation of a supercontinuum, with the flat plateau in the spectrum of the output emission stretching from 400 to 1400  nm by experimental measurement. The transmission loss is 0.20.3dB/m at wavelengths of 420900  nm.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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