The cause of these variations in delay is the change in the glass properties of the optical fiber with temperature. Both the refractive index of the glass and the length of the fiber are dependent on the ambient temperature. Traditional optical fiber suffers from a delay sensitivity of 39 ps/km/K. We are reducing the temperature sensitivity of the fiber delay through the application of a novel design of optical fiber, Anti-Resonant Hollow Core Fiber. The major improvement in the thermal sensitivity of this fiber comes from the fact that the light is guided in an air core, with very little overlap into the glass structure. This drastically reduces the impact that the thermally sensitive glass properties have on the propagation time of the optical signal. Additionally, hollow core fiber is inherently radiation insensitive, due to the light guidance in air, making it suitable for space applications.
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Amy Van Newkirk, J. E. Antonio Lopez, Rodrigo Amezcua Correa, Axel Schülzgen, John Mazurowski, "Anti-resonant hollow core fiber for precision timing applications," Proc. SPIE 10382, Photonic Fiber and Crystal Devices: Advances in Materials and Innovations in Device Applications XI, 103820E (23 August 2017);