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Graded Index Lens for Simplifying Alignment to Optical Fibers

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000043191D
Original Publication Date: 1984-Jul-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-04
Document File: 2 page(s) / 53K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Balliet, L: AUTHOR

Abstract

This article describes the use of graded index lenses (e.g., SELFOC* lenses) for use in fiber-optic applications. A unique graded index lens with special provisions to overcome optical fiber alignment and mounting problems is discussed. Present techniques used to precisely align the fiber with graded index lenses involve either mechanical alignment using precisely machined V grooved parts or an optical technique using a servo system with step motors. When proper alignment techniques are used to align the fiber with the axis of a standard quarter pitch (P/4) graded index lens, rays are collimated and will exit parallel to the axis, as shown in Fig. 1. However, these techniques are both intricate and expensive. Fig.

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Graded Index Lens for Simplifying Alignment to Optical Fibers

This article describes the use of graded index lenses (e.g., SELFOC* lenses) for use in fiber-optic applications. A unique graded index lens with special provisions to overcome optical fiber alignment and mounting problems is discussed. Present techniques used to precisely align the fiber with graded index lenses involve either mechanical alignment using precisely machined V grooved parts or an optical technique using a servo system with step motors. When proper alignment techniques are used to align the fiber with the axis of a standard quarter pitch (P/4) graded index lens, rays are collimated and will exit parallel to the axis, as shown in Fig. 1. However, these techniques are both intricate and expensive. Fig. 2 shows how a lens can be constructed to obtain the desired results and still eliminate intricate alignment problems. The lens 1 is constructed by using an inside deposition method in which glass is deposited on the inside of a glass tube. During the process, a concentric hole 2 is provided in the center of the lens. The resulting index profile is parabolic except for a discontinuity at the peak. The glass rod is cut slightly longer than a quarter pitch. The hole 2 is then filled with a dummy fiber glass material having an index of refraction that will produce a smooth parabolic profile, as shown in Fig. 3. It has also been found that epoxy of a specific selected index of refraction may be us...