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Proceedings Paper

Silica optical fibers: technology update
Author(s): David A. Krohn; Brian P. McCann
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Paper Abstract

Silica-core optical fibers have long been the standard delivery medium for medical laser delivery systems. Their high strength, excellent flexibility, and low cost continue to make them the fiber of choice for systems operating from 300 to 2200 nm. An overview of the current fiber constructions available to the industry is reviewed. Silicone-clad fibers, hard- fluoropolymer clad fibers and silica-clad fibers are briefly compared in terms of mechanical and optical properties. The variety of fiber coatings available is also discussed. A significant product development of silica fiber delivery systems has been in side-firing laser delivery systems for Urology. These devices utilize silica-core fibers to project the laser energy at a substantial lateral angle to the conventional delivery system, typically 40 to 100 degrees off axis. Many unique distal tips have been designed to meet the needs of this potentially enormous application. There are three primary technologies employed in side-firing laser delivery systems: reflection off of an attached medium; reflection within an angle-polished fiber through total internal reflection; and reflection from both an angle-polished fiber and an outside medium. Each technology is presented and compared on the basis of operation modality, transmission efficiency, and power-handling performance.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 May 1995
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 2396, Biomedical Optoelectronic Instrumentation, (1 May 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.208401
Show Author Affiliations
David A. Krohn, 3M Co. (United States)
Brian P. McCann, 3M Co. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2396:
Biomedical Optoelectronic Instrumentation
James A. Harrington; David M. Harris; Abraham Katzir, Editor(s)

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