Abstract

A new theory is developed to describe light propagation through a laterally restricted microcavity considered as a multisection waveguide. It realizes a synthesis between the characteristic matrix theory for light propagation in stratified media and the theory of normal modes for waveguides and can be applied to any cross-sectional geometry. Calculations of the optical response of vertical microcavities, consisting of either Bragg reflectors or complete microresonators, are performed in both rectangular and cylindrical geometries. As the theory fully accounts for modal dispersion, the results outline the major role played by dispersion in the optical response of such structures.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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