Stack, seal, evacuate, draw: A method for drawing hollow-core fiber stacks under positive and negative pressure

Leah Murphy, Stephanos Yerolatsitis, Tim Birks, Jim Stone

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The two-stage stack and draw technique is an established method for fabricating microstructured fibers, including hollow-core fibers. A stack of glass elements of around a meter in length and centimeters in outer diameter forms the first stage preform, which is drawn into millimeter scale canes. The second stage preform is one of the canes, which is drawn, under active pressure, into microscopic fiber. Separately controlled pressure lines are connected to different holes or sets of holes in the cane to control the microstructure of the fiber being drawn,often relying on glues or other sealants to isolate the differently-pressured regions. We show that the selective fusion and collapse of the elements of the stack, before it is drawn to cane or fiber, allows the stack to be drawn directly under differential pressure without introducing a sealant. Three applications illustrate the advantages of this approach. First, we draw antiresonant hollow-core fiber directly from the stack without making a cane, allowing a significantly longer length of fiber to be drawn. Second, we fabricate canes under pressure,such that they are structurally more similar to the final fiber. Finally, we use the method to fabricate new types of microstructured resonators with a non-circular cross-section.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37303 - 37313
Number of pages11
JournalOptics Express
Issue number21
Early online date26 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2022


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