Thursday, August 18, 2011

US Patent 8000577 - Nanoparticle-enhanced fiber optics

This patent from Alcatel-Lucent teaches how to incorporate nanoparticles of a size between 20 and 500 nm into glass fiber to improve the optical amplification in fiber optic communication devices. Claim 1 reads:

1. An optical fibre including a gain medium with a core made up of a transparent material and of nanoparticles comprising a doping element and at least one element that enhances the usage of said doping element, and of an outer cladding surrounding the core, wherein the doping element is erbium (Er), the enhancement element is chosen from among bismuth (Bi) and a combination of antimony (Sb) and of bismuth (Bi), and a size of the nanoparticles is greater than 20 nanometres.