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Specialty High Performance Coatings for Optical Fiber Applications via Perfluorocyclobutyl (PFCB) Aryl Ether Polymers

  • Stephen M. Budy (a1), Scott T. Iacono (a2), Wade Hawkins (a3), Paul Foy (a4), John Ballato (a5) and Dennis W. Smith (a6)...


There is a growing need for optical fiber coatings that can sustain higher temperatures than present materials permit. To date, polyimides are used predominantly but they generally are difficult to process and usually require multiple depositions to achieve the desired film thickness. Perfluorocyclobutyl (PFCB) aryl ether polymers have demonstrated much success as processable and amorphous fluoropolymers,[1] with particular emphasis on high performance optical applications.[2] This work discusses recent efforts into perfluorocyclobutyl aryl ether polymer-based optical fiber coatings.[3] A series of silica-based optical fibers were drawn with differing PFCB polymer coatings compositions and molecular weights on a Heathway draw tower. Results include a more than doubled usage temperature of coating (decomposition temperatures (Td ) in nitrogen and air were above 450 °C) without affecting fiber mechanical properties and comparable isothermal stability to conventional coatings, except with a >150 °C higher temperature. Preliminary results of the first successful coating of optical fibers by PFCB polymers will be presented herein, as well as future endeavors.



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