Improvements on Athermal All – Fibre DPSK-
WDM based on Unbalanced Thermally
Expanded Core optical fibres Mach-Zehnder

Anouar Rahmouni
, Nawfel Azami
, Abdi Farid
and Driss El idrissi

An innovalive melhod lo achieve ¡assiveIy lem¡eralure-inde¡endenl fibre-ly¡e Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler design is
¡ro¡osed. In lhis vork, ve demonslrale lhal lhe lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe fundamenlaI mode effeclive index is Iinked lo
lhe ex¡ansion of singIe-mode fiber core. When lhe lhermaI de¡endence (dneff/dT of lhe lhermaIIy diffused o¡licaI fiber)
decreases, lhe mode fieId diameler increases. Using lhe o¡licaI fused biconicaI lechnique fabricalion (IßT), a ¡assiveIy
lem¡eralure inde¡endenl fiber-ly¡e o¡licaI Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler based on lhermaIIy ex¡anded core o¡licaI fiber in
one arm has been deveIo¡ed. The ex¡erimenl resuIls are in good agreemenl vilh lhe numericaI simuIalion and ex¡eclalion.

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O¡licaI fiber based Mach-Zehnder inlerferomelers
(MZI) are key com¡onenls for dense vaveIenglh
division muIli¡Iexer (DWDM) o¡licaI communicalion
syslems. O¡licaI fiber slruclures aIIov high quaIily
devices such a Iov excess Ioss and Iov ¡oIarizalion
de¡endanl effecls. O¡licaI fiber based Mach-Zehnder
inlerferomelers are aIso used as DifferenliaI Ihase
Shifl Keying (DISK) demoduIalor. DISK is an
allraclive moduIalion formal for nexl-generalion
o¡licaI lransmission syslems since il exhibils high
loIerance lo chromalic dis¡ersion (CD) and
robuslness lo nonIinear effecls. ßesides lhese
advanlages, il aIso offers an im¡roved receiver
sensilivily by baIanced deleclion. In DISK
communicalions, one key device vhich is abIe lo
converl lhe differenliaI ¡hase informalion inlo
inlensily informalion lo be delecled by lhe
¡holodiodes is a deIay inlerferomeler, such as Mach-
Zehnder inlerferomeler (MZI). UsuaIIy, MZI is used
for demoduIaling DISK signaIs because of ils sim¡Ie
slruclure. In recenl years, aII-fiber MZI is ¡ro¡osed lo
lake ¡Iace of lhe slandard MZI for im¡roving lhe
¡erformance |1j. Hovever, lhe ¡ro¡osed design suffer
from lhermaI inslabiIilies vhich degrades lhe o¡licaI
¡erformances. Iiber based-MZI musl be slabIe over a
range of environmenlaI condilions, such as
lem¡eralures, vilhin a defined range, and during
¡resence of lem¡eralure varialions. Hovever, MZI
differenliaI ¡hase shifl inslabiIily is observed because
of lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe o¡licaI fiber
refraclive index. ConsequenlIy, channeI s¡acing of lhe
device as veII as lhe vaveIenglh ¡eaks and ¡assband
became unslabIe vhich causes significanl ¡robIems for
DWDM a¡¡Iicalions due lo lhe smaII se¡aralion
belveen channeIs as veII as dynamic range
demoduIalion inslabiIilies. ThermaI slabiIizalion can
be achieved by com¡ensaling lhe lem¡eralure induced
shifl so as lo mainlain lhe o¡licaI ¡alh Ienglh
difference unchanged as lhe lem¡eralure varies. Ior
furlher im¡roving lhe ¡erformance of aII-fiber MZI,

severaI schemes have been ¡ro¡osed recenlIy. In |2j a
¡holonic cryslaI fiber (ICI) based MZI for DISK
signaI demoduIalion is ¡resenled. In lhis scheme lhe
device is fabricaled by mismalch s¡Iicing of a ICI
vilh slandard singIe mode fibers (SMIs). In |3j a
muIlimode fiber (MMI) based inlerferomeler for
differenliaI ¡hase demoduIalion is ¡ro¡osed.
Hovever lhe Iasl lvo design do nol exhibil high
¡erformances such as Iov chromalic dis¡ersion, Iov
¡oIarizalion mode dis¡ersion since ICI and
muIlimode fibre are used.
Ifforls have been made lo design singIe mode o¡licaI
fibers Mach-Zehnder inlerferomelers so as lo achieve
high lhermaI slabiIily and minimize lem¡eralure
varialions and olher lhermaI effecls |4,5,6j and lo
mainlain high o¡licaI ¡erformances. As an exam¡Ie,
ref |4j describes a lem¡eralure com¡ensalion
lechnique of an aII-fiber Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler,
vhere lvo connecling fibers are of differenl Ienglhs
and lhe lhermaI de¡endance of one fiber is modified
by UV radialion. Il has been shovn lhal ex¡osing
o¡licaI fibers lo UV radialions aIIovs modifying lhe
lhermaI de¡endence ¡ro¡orlionaIIy lo lhe lime of
In lhis ¡a¡er ve ¡ro¡ose an innovalive melhod lo
achieve lem¡eralure insensilive aII-singIe mode
o¡licaI fiber Mach-Zehnder Inlerferomeler. In lhe
simuIalions ¡arl ve numericaIIy shov lhal lhe
lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe effeclive index of an
o¡licaI fiber can be modified using lhermaIIy
ex¡anded core (TIC) diffusion lechnique, and in lhe
ex¡erimenlaI ¡arl ve confirm lhese resuIls. This
lechnique aIIeviales lhe lem¡eralure slabiIily
requiremenls of Mach-Zehnder Inlerferomeler. WhiIe
TIC singIe mode o¡licaI fibres have been veII sludied
and shov exceIIenl o¡licaI ¡erformances |7j, lhe
lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe effeclive index of such
fibers have nol been sludied and re¡orled, lo lhe besl
of our knovIedge.
The ¡a¡er is organized as foIIov: ve firsl describe lhe
¡rinci¡Ies of lhe Mach-Zehnder Inlerferomeler (MZI)
and lhe condilions for a ¡assiveIy-alhermaI MZI. In
seclion 3 numericaI invesligalions are ¡erformed lo
sludy lhe lhermaI de¡endence of lhe effeclive index of
lhe fundamenlaI mode of a slandarl singIemode
o¡licaI fiber vhen lhis fiber is lhermaIIy ex¡anded. A
¡assive-lem¡eralure insensilive Mach-Zehnder
inlerferomeler fiber-design is ¡ro¡osed.

2. Theory of Mach Zehnder thermal stability
AII-fiber Mach-Zehnder inlerferomelers ly¡icaIIy
incIude lvo o¡licaI cou¡Iers se¡araled by a ¡hase shifl
region. The lvo fibers arms have differenl o¡licaI ¡alh
Ienglhs so lhal o¡licaI signaIs ¡ro¡agale lhrough lhem
al differenl veIocilies in lhe ¡hase shifl region. Lighl
Iaunched inlo lhe device ¡asses lhrough lhe firsl
cou¡Ier vhere il is s¡Iil and Ied lhrough lhe ¡air of
o¡licaI fibers. ßolh Iighl vaves are lhen cou¡Ied again
by lhe second cou¡Ier and laken oul as an o¡licaI
signaI oul¡ul from lhe lvo oul¡ul ¡orls of lhe second
cou¡Ier. If lhe Iighl ¡orlions recombining al lhe
second cou¡Ier are in ¡hase, lhey conslrucliveIy
inlerfere al one of lhe oul¡ul ¡orls of lhe second
cou¡Ier, if lhey are nol in ¡hase, in ¡arlicuIar if lhe
lvo Iighl ¡orlions incur a ! differencing ¡hase shifl,
lhey combine conslrucliveIy al lhe olher oul¡ul ¡orl of
lhe second cou¡Ier.
In an oul¡ul arm of lhe MZI, lhe condilion for
observing a maximum or a minimum of lransmilled
¡over is generaIIy vrillen as |12j:
Where ko·2!/" is lhe vave number, " being lhe
vaveIenglh in vacuum, neff1 and neff2 are lhe
effeclive indices of lhe o¡licaI fibers in lhe firsl and
second arm res¡ecliveIy of lhe inlerferomeler, L1 and
L2 are lhe Ienglhs of lhe firsl and second arm
res¡ecliveIy of lhe inlerferomeler, z1 and z2 are
inlegralion variabIes aIong lhe Ienglh of lhe firsl and
second arm, res¡ecliveIy, and m is an inleger. The
lhermaI de¡endence of an MZI is caIcuIaled by
differenlialion of equalion (1) vilh res¡ecl lo
vaveIenglh ", lem¡eralure T and Ienglhs L1 and L2.
The resuIl can be ex¡ressed in lhe foIIoving form:

Where #" is lhe fringe s¡acing, i.e. lhe vaveIenglh
se¡aralion belveen lvo lransmission ¡eaks in one
given oul¡ul ¡orl of lhe inlerferomeler. IIongalions of
lhe arms caused by lhermaI ex¡ansion of eilher lhe
fiber or of lhe subslrale are negIecled since lhe
lhermo-o¡lic effecl is dominanl. The fringe s¡acing is
found by lhe foIIoving equalion:

Where Ng1 (Ng2) is lhe effeclive grou¡ index in arm 1
(res¡. arm 2). The condilion lo oblain an alhermaI MZI
can be ex¡ressed as:
When lhe difference in geomelricaI Ienglh belveen lhe
lvo arms is nol loo Iarge, ly¡icaIIy in lhe range of
aboul 1 mm for a s¡acing of 100 GHz, a smaII
difference in dn/dT suffices lo com¡ensale for lhe
lhermaI unbaIance. In lhis ¡a¡er ve numericaIIy shov
lhal dn/dT can be conlroIIed by lhermaIIy ex¡anded
core o¡licaI fiber. Ix¡erimenlaI resuIls are lhen

3. Thermal stability of Thermally expanded
core fibres
WhiIe TIC singIe mode o¡licaI fiber have been veII
sludied and shov exceIIenl o¡licaI ¡erformances, lhe
lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe effeclive index of such
fibers have nol been sludied and re¡orled, lo lhe besl
of our knovIedge. In lhis seclion, numericaI
invesligalions on lhe lhermaI de¡endence of lhe
fundamenlaI mode of such fibers are re¡orled, and
viII be used in nexl seclion for a ¡ro¡osed design of
slabIe alhermaI MZI-based DISK demoduIalor for
o¡licaI nelvorks. ThermaIIy ex¡anded core o¡licaI
fibers (TIC) are very veII knovn for lheir ¡raclicaI
use in various a¡¡Iicalions. TIC fiber can have very
Iov inserlion Ioss |7j, and soIve aIignmenl ¡robIems of
connecling lvo singIe mode fibers (SMIs) vilh
differenl core sizes, cou¡Iing a SMI lo a Iaser diode,
and aIso of assembIing micro-o¡lic com¡onenls |6j. A
TIC fiber has an enIarged mode fieId diameler (MID)
oblained by healing a convenlionaI singIe-mode fiber
IocaIIy al a high lem¡eralure (-1570-1900K) and
diffusing some do¡anls as Ge or I inlo lhe core. The
core ex¡ansion rale de¡ends on lhe healing
lem¡eralure, lhe healing lime and lhe do¡anl inlensily
in lhe fiber core. The fabricalion lechnoIogy is acluaIIy
malure and aIIovs TIC fiber of mode fieId diameler as
high as 30 um. Ge is lhe do¡anl lhal has been mosl
frequenlIy re¡orled in diffusion sludies in o¡licaI
fibres. In lhis ¡a¡er ve are inleresled in lhe sludy of
lhe effeclive index lem¡eralure de¡endence of
Germanium core-do¡ed singIe mode o¡licaI fiber. In
order lo eslimale do¡anl diffusion during healing,
diffusion vas assumed lo occur according lo Iick's
Iav and lhe diffusion coefficienl vas assumed lo be
inde¡endenl of concenlralions bul de¡endenl on
lem¡eralure according lo Arrhenius equalion. The lvo
dimensions diffusion equalion is ¡resenled in Iq. (1)
and Arrhenius equalion in Iq. (2).

vhere D is lhe diffusion coefficienl |m2/sj, CGe is
Germania do¡anls concenlralions |moI fraclionj, # is
lhe La¡Iacian o¡eralor, l is lime |sj, T is lem¡eralure
|Kj, D0 is lhe ¡reex¡onenliaI lerm |m2/sj, I is
aclivalion energy |}/moIj and R is lhe gas conslanl,
8.314}/(KmoI). The foIIoving diffusion coefficienls
used in simuIalions is DGe · 3.10-4 µm2/s al 1600 °K.
Once Germania ¡rofiIe is knovn one can deduce lhe
refraclive index ¡rofiIe of lhe TIC fibre by using
SeIImeier equalions. The invesligalion of lhe lhermaI
varialion of lhe o¡licaI fibre refraclive index (n)
requires SeIImeier equalion.
The sel of ¡aramelers required lo com¡IeleIy
characlerize lhe lem¡eralure de¡endence of lhe
refraclive index is given beIov. SeIImeier equalion for
Germania do¡ed SiIica maleriaI GeO2(CGe)+SiO2(1-
CGe) is under lhe form |9j :
vhere \ is lhe o¡licaI vaveIenglh. The SeIImeier
coefficienls as a funclion of lem¡eralure T and
Germania moIe fraclion CGe are given in ref |7j. The
refraclive index vaIues for core and cIadding are
deduced from seIImeier equalion (10) using SeIImeier
coefficienls for bolh ¡ure siIica-cIadding (CGe ·0) and
germania-codo¡ed siIica core. NumericaI
invesligalions on dneff/dT are reaIized for TIC singIe
mode o¡licaI fibre Corning SMI-28. This fiber is
characlerized by 8.2 um core diameler, 0.14 numericaI
a¡erlure and a mode fieId diameler of 10.4 um al 1550
nm vaveIenglh. The germanium concenlralion in lhe
sle¡ index core of SMI is CGe ·3%. When healed,
SMI-28 core diffused in lhe cIadding and lhe Mode
fieId diameler increase as a funclion of lime healing.
The effeclive index (neff) of lhe fundamenlaI mode
LI01 of lhe TIC- SMI28 fiber is com¡uled by using

lhe adequale refraclive index ¡rofiI (eq. 10) knoving
lhe do¡anl concenlralion (eq. 8). SimuIalions of lhe
effeclive index are ¡erformed using ßeamIro¡ Rsofl
looI |11j. Iig.1 re¡resenls lhe lhermaI de¡endence of
lhe fundamenlaI mode effeclive index of SMI for
differenl TIC am¡Iilude Mode fieId Diameler as a
funclion of lem¡eralure.

Iig. 1: dneff/dT of optical fiber SMF-28 as a function
of temperature for various thermally expanded core
Mode Field Diameters (MFD).
4. Experimental results

Mach Zehnder inlerferomeler has been fabricaled in
our Iaboralory using fusion-la¡ering manufacluring
lechnique. 3dß cou¡Iers are fabricaled by fusing
IaleraIIy lvo singIe mode fibers (SMI-28) logelher
using, a micro-lorch heal source (¡ro¡ane & oxygen).
De¡ending on lhe fusion duralion, one oblains a cross
seclion vilh a degree of fusion ranging lheorelicaIIy
from zero (for unfused fibres) lo 1 (corres¡onding lo a
circuIar cross seclion lheorelicaIIy oblained afler an
infinile duralion) |12j. Irom a ¡raclicaI ¡oinl of viev,
lhe degree of fusion using is 0.7. MZI have been
fabricaled vilh excess Ioss of aboul 1 dß and 0.2 dß
¡oIarizalion de¡endanl Ioss (IDL). IDL has been
measured al lhe minimum inserlion Ioss. The o¡licaI
isoIalion of fabricaled MZI is aboul -15dß (Iig.4). As
shovn schemalicaIIy in Iig.2 An innovalive melhod lo
achieve ¡assiveIy lem¡eralure-inde¡endenl fibre-ly¡e
Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler design is ¡ro¡osed by
using a lhermaIIy ex¡anded core singIe mode o¡licaI
fiber in one arm.
In lhis ¡arl ve demonslrale ex¡erimenlaIIy lhal ve
can reduce lhe lhermaI de¡endence of Mach-Zehnder
Inlerferomeler by using a lhermaIIy ex¡anded core
singIe mode o¡licaI fiber in one arm. The
inlerferomeler used in lhis ex¡erience is a 100 GHz
frequency fringe s¡acing Mach Zehnder
Inlerferomeler in lhe C band. One fiber core arm of lhe
inlerferomeler is lhermaIIy ex¡anded by healing using
a high lem¡eralure (1500C°), for 20 minules lhrough
lhe use of a fIame lorch.

Iig.2: lhermaIIy ex¡anded core o¡licaI fiber Mach-
Zehnder inlerferomeler

ThermaI sensilivily has been ex¡erimenlaIIy measured
for bolh uncom¡ensaled and com¡ensaled 100 GHz
MZI using a conlinuous Iighl source al 1550 nm
vaveIenglh and a resislance healing for changing lhe
ambienl lem¡eralure for lhe lvo configuralions,
com¡ensaled and lhe uncom¡ensaled MZI design.
The lem¡eralure range over vhich ve have oblained
lhe ex¡erimenlaI resuIls is belveen (303.15 K and
453.15 K). As shovn in Iig.4 lhe red curve ¡resenls lhe
res¡onse of lhe uncom¡ensaled MZI. ¤ ¡hase
varialion is achieved by varying lem¡eralure from
293K lo 357K. Degradalion of lhe o¡licaI ¡over from
0dßm lo -15dßm is observed for lhis range of
lem¡eralure. Degradalion is Iimiled by lhe isoIalion of
lhe fabricaled MZI. On lhe olher side, lhe
com¡ensaled MZI (bIack curve) shov a ¡hase
varialion of ¤/10 in lhe same range of lem¡eralure.
The MZI ¡hase-lem¡eralure de¡endence has been
reduced as a resuIl of lhe ex¡ansion of lhe fiber core of
one MZI arm. In our demonslralion lhe degradalion of
lhe o¡licaI ¡over is aboul onIy 1dß com¡are lo lhe
¡revious 15dß degradalion of lhe uncom¡ensaled MZI.
This o¡limized com¡ensalion design has been
oblained by lhermaI ex¡ansion of lhe fibre core mode
for 20 minules of ex¡osure lo a 1500°C lorch fIame. ve
vere Iimiled by lhe ex¡osure of lhe fiber lo lhe fIame

lime. Indeed, loo Iong lime ex¡osure deslroys lhe
inlegrily of lhe fiber vhich lhen have more inlrinsic
Iosses. These fibers vere observed under lhe
microsco¡e and shoved a Ioss of maleriaI in lhe
cIadding and an excessive fragiIily, lhus reducing lheir

Iig. 4: Ix¡erimenlaI res¡onse of lhe com¡ensaled and
lhe Uncom¡ensaled 100GHz-MZI as a funclion of

In lhis ¡a¡er ve ¡ro¡ose an innovalive melhod lo
achieve lem¡eralure insensilive Mach-Zehnder
Inlerferomeler. The noveI com¡ensalor Mach-Zehnder
Inlerferomeler is described by using a lhermaIIy
ex¡anded core singIe mode o¡licaI fiber in one arm.
We shov lheorelicaIIy and ex¡erimenlaIIy more slabIe
behavior over a vide lem¡eralure range from 293K lo
357K. This soIulion has lhe advanlages lo be
embedded vilh differenl ly¡es of MZIs and o¡licaI

|1j I. Seguin, and I. Gonlhier, ''T uneabIe AII-Iiber
DeIay-Line Inlerferomeler for DISK DemoduIalion,''
in Tech. Dig. OIC'2005 , ¡¡: OIL5 (2005)
|2j }iangbing Du, Yongheng Dai, Gordon K. I. Lei,
Wei|un Tong, and Chesler Shu, ´Iholonic cryslaI fiber
based Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler for DISK signaI
demoduIalion¨, O¡lics Ix¡ress, VoI. 18, No. 8, ¡¡:
7917-7922 (2010)
|3j Yannick Keilh Lize, Roberl Go mma and Raman
Kashya¡, ´Lov-cosl muIlimode fiber Mach-Zehnder
inlerf eromeler for differenliaI ¡hase demoduIalion¨,
in ¡roc. SIII 2006, Sa n Diego, USA, Augusl (2006)
|4j N. Azami, A. ViIIeneuve, I. Gonlhier, ´Melhod of
ad|usling lhermaI de¡endence of an o¡licaI fiber¨,
O¡lics Communicalions, VoI. 251, Issues 1-3, ¡¡. 6-9,
|5j N.azami, ´Melhod of ad|uslmenl of lhermaI
de¡endence in an o¡licaI fiber¨ Uniled Slales Ialenl
No: US 6,631,232 ß1. Dale of Ialenl: Ocl. 7, 2003.
|6j I. Gonlhier, I. Seguin, Irancois, N. Godboul, A.
ViIIeneuve, ´Iassive lhermaI com¡ensalion of aII-fiber
Mach-Zehnder inlerferomeler¨ Uniled Slales Ialenl
No: US 6,850,654. Dale of Ialenl: Ieb. 1, 2005.
|7j K. Shiraishi, Y. Aizava and S. Kavakami, "ßeam
ex¡anding fiber using lhermaI diffusion of lhe
do¡anl,"}. Lighlvave TechnoI. 8, 1151 (1990).
|8j T. Haibara, T. Nakashima, M. Malsumolo, H.
Hanafusa, ´Conneclion Ioss reduclion by lhermaIIy-
diffused ex¡anded core fiber¨, IIII Iholonics Techn.
Lell. 3(4), 348 (1991).
|9j G. S. KIiros, I. C. Divari, ´Cou¡Iing characlerislics
of Iaser diodes lo high numericaI a¡erlure lhermaIIy
ex¡anded core fibers¨ }. Maler. Sci: Maler. IIeclron. 20,
S59-S62 (2009).
|10j G. S. KIiros, N. Tsironikos, ´VarialionaI anaIysis of
¡ro¡agalion characlerislics in lhermaIIy diffused
ex¡anded core fibers¨, O¡lik: InlernalionaI }ournaI for
Lighl and IIeclron O¡lics 116, 365 (2005).
|11jMode caIcuIalion and ¡ro¡agalion looI.
Descri¡lion avaiIabIe al
|12j NavfeI Azami and Suzanne Lacroix, ´O¡licaI
Iibers Research Advances,¨ Cha¡ler 7 of Recenl
DeveIo¡menls In aII Iiber Devices for O¡licaI
Nelvorks: Design and A¡¡Iicalions Idilor }urgen C.
SchIesinge, ¡¡. 205-229 © 2007 Nova Science

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Temperature (K)