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Proceedings Paper

Seeing blue: pushing integrated photonics into the ultraviolet with ALD aluminum oxide
Author(s): Gavin N. West
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Paper Abstract

Following the widespread implementation of silicon photonics technology, the emergence of applications in optogenetics, biosensing, augmented reality, and atomic-molecular-optical physics has highlighted a need for integrated photonic platforms operating at visible and ultraviolet wavelengths. Conventional materials for integrated photonics are not well-suited to the task; silicon's 1.1 eV bandgap thwarts its usefulness for wavelengths shorter than the near infrared, and as wavelengths decrease toward the ultraviolet, silicon nitride likewise begins to falter and strong material absorption takes hold. Meanwhile, aluminum oxide grown by atomic layer deposition (ALD) is a largely unexplored material which exhibits low material loss deep into the ultraviolet. ALD alumina keeps several desirable characteristics of silicon nitride; namely easy deposition on a variety of substrates and processing with commonly-available tooling. Here I discuss recent work developing ALD aluminum oxide for building integrated photonic systems, with an emphasis on fabrication and recent measured results. I review results for waveguides and resonators in the visible-to-ultraviolet regime, using both vertical grating couplers and inverse-taper edge couplers for input/output. Measured ring resonators at λ = 405 nm exhibit intrinsic quality factors exceeding 470,000, and propagation loss is measured from 0.5 dB/cm at λ = 461 nm to < 3 dB/cm at λ = 370 nm.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 February 2020
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 11283, Integrated Optics: Devices, Materials, and Technologies XXIV, 112830B (25 February 2020); doi: 10.1117/12.2545047
Show Author Affiliations
Gavin N. West, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11283:
Integrated Optics: Devices, Materials, and Technologies XXIV
Sonia M. García-Blanco; Pavel Cheben, Editor(s)

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