Computational study of nanostructured composite materials for photonic crystal fibre sensors.
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JOHNY, J., PRABHU, R. and FUNG, W.-K. 2016. Computational study of nanostructured composite materials for photonic crystal fibre sensors. IOP conference series: materials science and engineering [online], 195: proceedings of the 3rd structural nano composites conference (NANOSTRUC 2016), 12-15 September 2016, Aberdeen, UK, article ID 012012. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1088/1757-899X/195/1/012012
Photonic Crystal Fibres (PCFs) developed using nanostructured composite materials provides special optical properties which can revolutionise current optical sensing technologies. The modal and propagation characteristics of the PCF can be tailored by altering their geometrical parameters and material infiltrations. A drawback of commercially available PCF is their limited operating wavelengths, which is mostly in the infrared (IR) spectral band. Nanostructured composite materials manipulates the optical properties of the PCF, facilitating their operation in the higher sensitivity near infrared (NIR) wavelength regime. Hence, there arises a need to closely investigate the effect of nanostructure and composite materials on various optical parameters of the PCF sensor. This paper presents a hexagonal PCF designed using COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS 5.1 software, with a nanostructured core and microstructured cladding. Propagation characteristics like confinement loss and mode field diameter (MFD) are investigated and compared with various geometrical parameters like core diameter, cladding hole diameter, pitch, etc. Theoretical study revealed that a nanostructured PCF experiences reduced confinement losses and also improved mode field diameter. Furthermore, studies are also carried out by infiltrating the cladding holes with composite materials (liquid crystal and glass). These simulations helped in analysing the effect of different liquid crystal materials on PCF bandwidth and spectral positions.