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Work Group Optical Fiber Technology

The optical fiber technology work group covers research activities in the areas of the complete production chain for special optical fibers based on fused silica and soft oxidic optical glasses. The research work pertains to both the material aspects of advanced applications as optical fibers and the technological aspects of guaranteeing specific structural and doping characteristics. In the area of special active fibers for laser and amplifier applications, in addition to fiber technology research on the increased optical efficiency of Yb-doped laser fibers with an operating range of a wavelength of approximately 1 µm, the development of laser fibers for the eye-safe wavelength range of approximately 2 µm with thulium doping is the center of focus.

Different methods of preform preparation are currently being used and developed:

  • Preform gas-phase processes (MCVD + solution doping, rare-earth gas-phase doping)
  • Powder sintering method (REPUSIL)
  • Enameling technology

In addition to the material aspects, such as dopant incorporation and dopant interaction in glass, the main focus of research is fiber drawing technology for microstructured fibers and nanoscale hollow-cladding structures via cane drawing steps, as well as multiple novel fiber coating methods (e.g., freeze coating) with performance-stable and special optically functionalized materials.

Additional important focuses include the research and technological implementation of special microstructured fibers for biophotonic and environmental analysis applications.

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