Multi-plane light conversion (MPLC) has recently been developed as a versatile tool for manipulating spatial distributions of the optical field through repeated phase modulations. An MPLC Device consists of a series of phase masks separated by free-space propagation. It can convert one orthogonal set of beams into another orthogonal set through unitary transformation, which is useful for a number of applications. In telecommunication, for example, mode-division multiplexing (MDM) is a promising technology that will enable continued scaling of capacity by employing spatial modes of a single fiber. MPLC has shown great potential in MDM devices with ultra-wide bandwidth, low insertion loss (IL), low mode-dependent loss (MDL), and low crosstalk. This dissertation presents MPLC devices for (de)multiplexing, coupling, routing, optical signal processing, and wavefront synthesis. First, fundamentals in the design, simulation, and characterization of MPLC devices are introduced. In the area of MPLC devices, a coupler based on MPLC was demonstrated to bridge between few-mode fibers and waveguides. A reconfigurable broadband mode router for multi-port mode-to-space mapping was proposed using the MPLC technique, compatible with existing wavelength division multiplexed (WDM) systems. In the area of MPLC signal processing, an ultrabroadband polarization-insensitive optical 90° hybrid, which is a two-input four-output device, was demonstrated. In the area of system application, we demonstrated the use of a pair of 45-mode MPLC (de)multiplexers and high-sensitivity superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors (SNSPDs) to measure the differential mode group delay (DMDG), distributed mode crosstalk, and cladding modes of a commercial graded-index multimode fiber (GI-MMF). A compact, large-area, non-mode selective MPLC coherent beam combiner using curved mirrors is also presented for high-power wavefront synthesis.


If this is your thesis or dissertation, and want to learn how to access it or for more information about readership statistics, contact us at STARS@ucf.edu

Graduation Date





Li, Guifang


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Optics and Photonics


Optics and Photonics

Degree Program

Optics and Photonics


CFE0009844; DP0027785





Release Date

June 2024

Length of Campus-only Access

1 year

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)

Restricted to the UCF community until June 2024; it will then be open access.