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Proceedings Paper

Massive free-space optical 1xN fiber switch using an adaptive membrane mirror
Author(s): Frederic Gonte; Yves-Alain Peter; Hans Peter Herzig; Rene Daendliker
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Paper Abstract

We present a 1xN switch for single mode fiber optical communication systems, which is composed of an array of fibers, an achromatic lens, and an adaptive membrane mirror. The working principle of the optical switch is as follows: the center fiber of the array delivers the input signal, this signal is collimated by the lens, back reflected on the membrane mirror and refocused by the lens to an other fiber. The addressing of the receiving fiber is made by lateral displacement of the lens. However, using the achromatic lens under off-axis conditions introduces aberrations, which cause coupling losses to the receiving single-mode fibers. The deformable membrane mirror is used to adaptively correct these aberrations. The optimization of the coupling efficiency is made with the help of a genetic algorithm. For each position of the lens, the optimized voltages on the electrodes of the membrane mirror can be stored during the calibration procedure and afterwards recalled during operation of the switch. A demonstrator has been set up with a commercially available linear array of 32 single-mode fibers disposed in V-grooves, an achromatic lens mounted on a two-dimensional translation stage, and a membrane mirror made of silicon nitride coated with aluminum and electro-statically activated by thirty-seven electrodes. To demonstrate the capabilities of the aberration correction we used the first fiber in the array as input fiber and optimized the coupling efficiency to all the other fibers in the array. We obtained insertion losses of less than 3 dB and a cross talk below 30 dB. These results prove the feasibility to build a switch with a two-dimensional array of more than 1000 addressable fibers.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 February 2002
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 4493, High-Resolution Wavefront Control: Methods, Devices, and Applications III, (1 February 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.454729
Show Author Affiliations
Frederic Gonte, Univ. de Neuchatel (Germany)
Yves-Alain Peter, Univ. de Neuchatel (United States)
Hans Peter Herzig, Univ. de Neuchatel (Switzerland)
Rene Daendliker, Univ. de Neuchatel (Switzerland)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4493:
High-Resolution Wavefront Control: Methods, Devices, and Applications III
John D. Gonglewski; Mikhail A. Vorontsov; Mark T. Gruneisen, Editor(s)

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