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3 June 2011 Hollow core fiber optics for mid-wave and long-wave infrared spectroscopy
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We describe the development and testing of hollow core glass waveguides (i.e., fiber optics) for use in Mid-Wave Infrared (MWIR) and Long-Wave Infrared (LWIR) spectroscopy systems. Spectroscopy measurements in these wavelength regions (i.e., from 3 to 14 μm) are useful for detecting trace chemical compounds for a variety of security and defense related applications, and fiber optics are a key enabling technology needed to improve the utility and effectiveness of detection and calibration systems. Hollow glass fibers have the advantage over solid-core fibers (e.g., chalcogenide) in that they are less fragile, do not produce cladding modes, do not require angle cleaving or antireflection coatings to minimize laser feedback effects, and effectively transmit deeper into the infrared. This paper focuses on recent developments in hollow fiber technology geared specifically for infrared spectroscopy, including single mode beam delivery with relatively low bending loss. Results are presented from tests conducted using both Quantum Cascade Lasers (QCL) and CO2 lasers operating in the LWIR wavelength regime. Single-mode waveguides are shown to effectively deliver beams with relatively low loss (~ 1 dB/m) and relatively high beam quality. The fibers are also shown to effectively mode-filter the "raw" multi-mode output from a QCL, in effect damping out the higher order modes to produce a circularly symmetric Gaussian-like beam profile.
© (2011) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Jason M. Kriesel, Nahum Gat, Bruce E. Bernacki, Rebecca L. Erikson, Bret D. Cannon, Tanya L. Myers, Carlos M. Bledt, and James A. Harrington "Hollow core fiber optics for mid-wave and long-wave infrared spectroscopy", Proc. SPIE 8018, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XII, 80180V (3 June 2011);

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