3D printing technology application in optical fiber production process
3D printing technology has now been applied in the production of glass fiber optic cable . Basically , one can hardly imagine the production process of glass fiber , an ultra-small materials and complex chemically and optically . The following summary will help readers better understand the production process existing optical fiber. The process consists of two steps : Create a distribution and spinning mold.
Preforms creation process : First , the hollow glass tube will be engulfed in the silicon dioxide tank to completely remove the residue and then be carried away heat . After the process, the glass tube will become firmer ; This glass tube is the core of the fiber optic cable .
Spinning Process : In this process , we have just completed the tube embryos into a spinning system in the chart steep as in the image above . Tube embryos for melting at temperatures of 2,000 degrees Celsius , then the machine will pull the thread, measuring carefully , wrap and roll the yarn into the cylinder .
A single-function optical fiber with a diameter of 10 micrometers core diameter reflective layer is 100 micrometers . Meanwhile , a multi-functional optical fiber core diameter of 50 micrometers diameter reflective layer is 125 micrometers
Print 3D simplifies the process of creating embryos
Current technologies can only merge the components of silicon dioxide , but MMAM allows researchers to change the components during embryogenesis , direct intervention in the characteristics of optical fibers .
Jayanta Sahu , research professor at the Center for optoelectronics research , told reporters : ” We will be designed , manufactured and put into use multi- material 3D Printer ( MMAM ) to create embryos fiber optic cable ( including both conventional and synthetic fibers structural behavior ) with silica and the material composition of glass is different . Our technology can produce the complex preforms with a shorter and simpler methods . Even multi- material 3D printers can also do the ” unthinkable . ”
Optical fiber manufacturers will certainly satisfied with the ability to create preforms with complex internal structure , especially when the industry is moving toward production technology of photonic crystal fibers .
Professor Jayanta had talks with Martin Rowe of The EE Times about photonic crystal fibers . ” With many holes structure filled with air, light passing through the photonic crystal fibers than current optical fibers . Transfer speed will also faster than the SMF fiber 28 because the speed of light through the air faster than the silica glass , the material created SMF fiber 28. ”
The future of 3D printing technology in the production of photonic crystal fibers
When asked about future plans for MMAM , Professor Jayanta said : ” The basic characteristics of spectral attenuation , dispersion , bearing capacity and doping profiles will be studied to set this established technology . Then we will apply crystal fiber optic testing on the actual test . ”
In the press release of Southampton , Professor Sahu wrote : ” We hope to open up a new avenue in optical fiber production for applications in various fields including telecommunications , sensors , fiber super material data and high-energy laser . We are very excited to pioneer this project . “