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Fiber Optic Y Connection Question

  1. Jul 13, 2012 #1
    Is it possible to have a fiber optic wire spliced onto another (or starting from 3 separate fibers) to form a Y shape and have loss-less (or close thereto, as good as a normal splice) transmission from 2 of the fibers into the third? I know this wouldn't work for double-clad fiber or for single-mode fiber - but I'm wondering if setting a bunch of fiber lasers in a binary tree configuration to increase output power would be more practical than building a fiber disk laser (in terms of ease of the build, since a disk laser cavity requires some pretty precise mechanical tuning).
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 13, 2012 #2

    Claude Bile

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    So you are asking if you can do a 3-way fusion splice?

    I would say theoretically yes, practically no. Not easily anyway.

  4. Jul 13, 2012 #3
    I'm guessing you would need to align the angles correctly, but would a 3-way fusion splice require the fibers to have the crystal lattices of their tips aligned as well, or just the angles?
  5. Jul 13, 2012 #4
    You would not be able to build this yourself, but they are deployed in great volumes in passive optical networks (such as Verizon's FIOS).
  6. Jul 14, 2012 #5
    I just had a thought, and might be incredibly wrong, but if not:

    Could you use a liquid with the same refraction index as the doped fiber to create the junction?

    I'm considering if you were to machine out a Y-shaped cavity with 3 holes, placed 2 fibers inside then filled with a similar refractive index fluid, then inserted the third fiber (perhaps submersed to prevent air bubbles).
  7. Jul 14, 2012 #6
    Index matching gels or "optical gels" are routinely used for splicing fibers. Splitters and combiners is a whole different situation.
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