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13 March 2013 In-plane diffraction loss free optical cavity using coated optical fiber and silicon micromachined spherical mirror
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Light trapping in optical cavities has many applications in optical telecommunications, biomedical optics, atomic studies, and chemical analysis. Efficient optical coupling in these cavities is an important engineering problem that affects greatly the cavity performance. One interesting way to form an optical cavity, while simultaneously connected to the rest of the optical systems, is to use an optical fiber surface as one of the cavity mirrors while the second mirror is fabricated by MEMS technology. In this way, cavity tuning with a MEMS actuator is a simple achievable task with low cost in mass production. The main problem in this solution is the high diffraction loss associated with the small spot size at the output of the standard single-mode fiber (SMF). Diffraction loss in the cavity is usually overcome by using an expensive lensed fiber or by inserting a coated lens in the cavity leading to a long cavity with small free spectral range (FSR). In this work, we report a Fabry-Perot cavity formed by a multilayer-coated cleaved-surface SMF inserted into a grove while facing a spherical micromirror; both are fabricated by silicon micromachining. The light is trapped inside the cavity while propagating in-plane of the wafer substrate. The light is injected in and collected from a Corning SMF-28 optical fiber with a coated surface reflectivity of about 98% at 1330 nm (O-band). The silicon mirror surface is aluminum metalized with a reflectivity of about 92%. The measured cavity has a line width of 0.45 nm around 1330 nm with a FSR of 26 nm. The obtained results indicate an almost diffraction-loss free optical cavity with a quality factor close to 3000, limited by the optical surfaces reflectivity that can be improved in future by an optimized mirror fabrication process and better matching of the fiber multilayer coating.
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Yasser Sabry, Tarik Bourouina, Bassam Saadany, and Diaa Khalil "In-plane diffraction loss free optical cavity using coated optical fiber and silicon micromachined spherical mirror ", Proc. SPIE 8616, MOEMS and Miniaturized Systems XII, 86160P (13 March 2013);


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