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Proceedings Paper

Laser ablated coupling structures for optical printed circuit boards
Author(s): Geert Van Steenberge; Peter Geerinck; Markus Riester; Siegfried Pongratz; Peter Van Daele
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Paper Abstract

We report on the cost effective fabrication of 45° micromirror couplers within single-mode polymer waveguides for achieving fully embedded board-level optoelectronic interconnections. Compatibility with existing board manufacturing technology is achieved by making use of polymers with high thermal stability. The sol-gel polymers behave as negative photo resist and waveguides are patterned by UV exposure. Micromirrors are fabricated using excimer laser ablation, a very flexible technology that is particularly well suited for structuring of polymers because of their excellent UV-absorption properties and highly non-thermal ablation behavior. A coupling structure based on total internal reflection (TIR) is enhanced by developing a process for embedding a metal coated 45° mirror in the optical layers. The mirrors are selectively metallized using a lift-off process. Filling up the angled via without the presence of air bubbles and providing a flat surface above the mirror is only possible by enhancing the cladding deposition process with ultrasound agitation. Surface roughness of both the mirrors and the upper cladding surface above the mirrors is investigated using a non-contact optical profiler. Initial loss measurements at 1.3 μm show a propagation loss of 0.62 dB/cm and an excess mirror loss of 1.55 dB. During most recent experiments mirror roughness has been reduced from 160 nm to 20 nm, which will seriously reduce the mirror loss.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 September 2005
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 5956, Integrated Optics: Theory and Applications, 59561A (30 September 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.622890
Show Author Affiliations
Geert Van Steenberge, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)
Peter Geerinck, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)
Markus Riester, Motorola GmbH (Germany)
Siegfried Pongratz, Motorola GmbH (Germany)
Peter Van Daele, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5956:
Integrated Optics: Theory and Applications
Tadeusz Pustelny; Paul V. Lambeck; Christophe Gorecki, Editor(s)

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