Product Code: PIC06_M108

Writing Waveguide in Photosensitive Glass Using Ultrafast Laser
D.K.Y. Low, Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology; Singapore
K.J. Moh, Nanyang Technological Univ.; Singapore
Zhongli Li, SIMTech; Singapore
G.C. Lim, Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology; Singapore
Presented at PICALO 2006

We report two methods of fabricating waveguides in photosensitive Ag+ doped Foturan glass by femtosecond (fs) laser writing and subsequent annealing. The first method, which involved writing at laser energy higher than the optical breakdown threshold, resulted in microstructural changes and a refractive index increase. In contrast, the laser energy used in second method was much lower than the threshold for optical breakdown. Thermal annealing at 500oC after the writing process was performed. The annealing caused Ag nanoparticles to be precipitated in the laser writing trace and corresponding increases in refractive index. Ag nanoparticles have two significant effects on light propagation in the waveguide. It scatters the propagating light in the waveguide and increase waveguide losses. In the same time, it also contribute towards light confinement due to the localized increase in refractive index. The role of Ag nanoparticles population on the guiding characteristics of the written waveguides is addressed.

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