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Proceedings Paper

Coupling from optical fibers to fast silicon modulators
Author(s): Goran Masanovic; Ching Eng Jason Png; Vittorio M. N. Passaro; Graham T. Reed; Ragheid M.H. Atta; Graham J. Ensell; Alan G. R. Evans
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Paper Abstract

In silicon based photonic circuits, optical modulation is usually performed via the plasma dispersion effect, which is a relatively slow process. Until recently, most reserachers utilized Silicon on Insulator (SOI) waveguides with cross secitonal dimensions of the order of 5 microns. This limits the speed of devices based on the plasma dispersion effect due to the finite transit time of charge carriers. Consequently moving to smaller dimensions will increase device speed, as well as providing other advantages of closer packaging density, smaller bend radius, and cost effective fabrication. As a result, the trend in recent years has been a move to smaller waveguides, of the order of 1 micron in cross sectional dimensions. However, coupling light to such small waveguides is relatively inefficient. In the literature, the problem of coupling optical fibers to thin semiconductor waveguides has not been solved sufficiently well to obtain both high coupling efficiency and good fabrication tolerances, due to large difference between the fiber and the waveguide in both dimensions and refractive indices. In this paper, we discuss both the desing of small waveguide modulators (of the order of ~1 micron) together with a novel theoretical solution to the coupling problem. An example of coupling light to a thin silicon waveguide is given, as well as a discussion of a number of modulator design issues.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 July 2003
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 4998, Photonic Integrated Systems, (9 July 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.476538
Show Author Affiliations
Goran Masanovic, Univ. of Surrey (United Kingdom)
Ching Eng Jason Png, Univ. of Surrey (United Kingdom)
Vittorio M. N. Passaro, Politecnico di Bari (Italy)
Graham T. Reed, Univ. of Surrey (United Kingdom)
Ragheid M.H. Atta, Univ. of Southampton (United Kingdom)
Graham J. Ensell, Univ. of Southampton (United Kingdom)
Alan G. R. Evans, Univ. of Southampton (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4998:
Photonic Integrated Systems
Andrew R. Pirich; Ray T. Chen; Louay A. Eldada; Louay A. Eldada; Andrew R. Pirich; Joseph C. Chon; Paul L. Repak; Paul L. Repak; Ray T. Chen; Joseph C. Chon, Editor(s)

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