The unique ways in which sol-gel derived silicate networks, that contain photosensitive methacrylate substituents, respond to light are described. Visible laser light in a hybrid acrylate-silica glass waveguide leads to photo initiated polymerization of the monomer. Polymerization proceeds with a high degree of spatial localization to create an 'optical fiber on a chip'. Photo transformations in the matrix are monitored by in situ waveguide Raman spectroscopy. Photo-orientation of the acrylate polymerization is controlled by the polarization sates of the guided wave. In this way, birefringence axes are reversibly written in the fiber.
Mark P. Andrews,
"Photo-oriented polymerization in hybrid glass waveguides", Proc. SPIE 3943, Sol-Gel Optics V, (2 May 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.384323; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.384323