Over the last two decades the interest in photonic crystal fiber (PCF) has grown considerably, particularly in nonlinear optics where it allows enhanced control over the dispersion landscape. Although silica is the material most commonly used to fabricate PCF, its limited window of transmission and its susceptibility to optical damage at wavelengths below ~350nm is driving the development of fibers made from glasses with transmission windows extending into the deep ultraviolet and the mid-infrared. An alternative is offered by gas-filled hollow-core fiber, in which the light propagates predominantly in the gas.
In kagomé-style hollow-core PCF filled with noble gas, the weak anomalous dispersion of the empty fiber is balanced by the normal dispersion of the filling gas, resulting in a versatile system whose dispersion landscape can be adjusted in real time [Travers et al., JOSAB 28, A11 (2011)]. Under appropriate conditions the launched pulse undergoes soliton self-compression followed by emission of a band of dispersive radiation in the UV. UV light tunable down to 113 nm has been generated with this technique [Russell et al., Nat. Photon. 8, 278 (2014)].
Solid-core ZBLAN (fluorozirconate) glass PCF is transparent from 0.2 to ~7.8µm. Launching ~1nJ 140fs pulses at 1µm wavelength into a ~1µm diameter core resulted, after 4cm of propagation, in generation of a supercontinuum spectrum extending from ~210nm to beyond 2µm. In strong contrast to silica PCF, the ZBLAN PCF showed no signs of any solarization-related damage, even when operating over many hours [Jiang et al., Nat. Photon. 9, 133 (2015)].
Nicolas Y. Joly, Xin Jiang, John C. Travers, Alexey Ermolov, and Philip S. Russell, "Solid-core and hollow-core photonic crystal fiber for generation of bright ultraviolet light
(Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 9926, UV and Higher Energy Photonics: From Materials to Applications, 992608 (Presented at SPIE Nanoscience + Engineering: August 28, 2016; Published: 11 November 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2236481.5161498119001.
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