Optical hybrids enable the unambiguous measurement of both the amplitude of an optical signal and its phase relative to a reference. A fusion-tapering technique is used to produce monolithic all-fiber 3x3 optical hybrids. By a symmetry argument, theory predicts that an equilateral triangular 3x3 coupler must form a 120° hybrid whenever a power equipartition is obtained during tapering. Precision-machined holding clamps constrain three SMF-28 fibers to an equilateral triangle geometry. An oxygen-propane micro-torch is used for the fusion and tapering steps. Fabricated devices are characterized with respect to insertion loss and relative phases at different wavelengths. Fabricated devices exhibit excess loss less than 1 dB from 1300 to 1600 nm, the coupling ratio is 33,2 ± 2,6% at 1550 nm, the design center wavelength. The relative phases are measured within 120 ± 10° and 240° ± 10° across the whole C-band from 1530 to 1565 nm. Compared to previous work, all-fibre hybrids are fabricated without an outer glass tube, exhibit lower excess loss and good phase tolerance over the whole C-band.
Marie-Helene Bussieres-Hersir and Nicolas Godbout, "Fabrication and characterization of all-fiber 120-degree optical hybrids (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10561, Next-Generation Optical Communication: Components, Sub-Systems, and Systems VII, 105610O (Presented at SPIE OPTO: January 31, 2018; Published: 20 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2290736.5755002054001.
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