Unified approach for calculating the number of confined modes in multilayered waveguiding structures
A general formalism is developed in order to find the number of modes and mode cutoff conditions in multilayer waveguiding structures. An explicit expression is presented for the number of confined modes that allows the modes to be counted without having to analyze the specific eigenvalue equation of the structure. The method is illustrated by its application to several structures: the buried layer, the directional coupler, and the three-guide symmetrical arrangement. By a suitable extension of the formalism, the number of well-confined modes is found for a four-layer structure.