Integrated optic devices are usually sensitive to the polarization state of light, because the two polarized modes of the waveguides that form the devices in general have different propagation constants and may also suffer from different losses. The performance of such devices becomes unstable when they are connected to single-mode fibers, as the polarization state of the output light from a practical fiber link usually fluctuates in an unpredictable manner. A simple solution could be provided by using waveguides in which the two polarized modes are degenerate, i.e., have equal propagation constants. In this paper, it is shown theoretically with the spectral index method that the quasi-transverse electric (TE) and quasi-transverse magnetic (TM) modes of a properly designed optical strip-loaded waveguide can have equal propagation constants. The conditions for achieving mode degeneracy, or zero modal birefringence, are presented and discussed. Strip-loaded waveguides with degenerate polarized modes can be used potentially for forming polarization-insensitive optoelectronic devices.
Wa Peng Wong and Kin Seng Chiang, "Design of Optical Strip-Loaded Waveguides with Zero Modal Birefringence," J. Lightwave Technol. 16, 1240- (1998)