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We analyzed the effects of acoustic reflection on the performance of an acoustooptic variable optical attenuator on a cladding-etched single-mode fiber. It is shown that the acoustic reflection will generate time-dependent modulation on the output optical signal and reduce the maximum achievable attenuation of the device. By employing a tapered fiber structure and using vacuum grease as the acoustic absorber, we showed that the acoustic reflectance can be reduced by two orders and the maximumdoi:10.1109/lpt.2003.819395 fatcat:ce5saccovreudpfujwtxjyj5jq