Photonic crystal optical fibers have much more degrees of freedom concerning the geometries and index contrasts than
step-index fibers; therefore, the theoretical analysis of their performance is usually based on the finite element method.
In this work, taking advantage of the similarities observed for twisted single-mode fibers: standard (SMF-28 and SMF-
28e) and hexagonal photonic fibers, we propose that in regard with polarization performance, photonic fibers can be
described using a simpler model based on classical polarization optics. The main advantages of the matrix model we
propose lie in its accuracy and generality: for each one of the selected wavelengths and input states of polarization, it
allows a precise prediction of the output polarization state. The comparison of the experimental results measured for
standard and photonic fibers with the theoretical model predictions indicates that in both cases, twist induced
birefringence is produced not only by the medium's photoelasticity, but also by the waveguide (cladding/core structure
and asymmetry) modification. In addition, for the photonic fiber, the non-symmetrical response to right and left twist
allowed the identification of an initial twist as part of the residual elliptical birefringence.