Together with colleagues of the Institute of Electronics Materials Technology (ITME) in Poland, B-PHOT researchers have manufactured microstructured optical fibers in novel soft glass materials for endoscopic applications. The coherent fiber bundles that consists of tightly packed, regularly ordered high-refractive index cores in a common low-refractive index cladding were fabricated through the stack-and-draw technique.
The scanning and focusing of light, needed in endoscopy, is achieved using appropriate spatial light modulation of the light before it is coupled into the optical fiber.
Because this method of proximal spatial light modulation does not require any additional micro-optics or micro-mechanics it enables further miniaturization of endoscopes and as such those ultrasmall-diameter endoscopes allow the optical interrogation of tissue and organs that are not accessible with larger endoscopes.
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