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Customer Access System Utilising Packaged Silicon-on-Insulator Integrated Optical Components

Objective

The overall project objective is the development of two low cost packaged demonstration components, based on Active Silicon integrated Optical Circuit (ASOC) manufacturing technology, for implementation of optical fibre customer access systems. This objective includes defining component specification from studies of the network topology economics, utilising the results from other RACE I and II projects (e.g. ACCESS and FIRST).
Consistent production of high quality silicon on insulator (SOI) wafers has been achieved suitable for transceiver fabrication with a planar waveguiding loss of less than 0.1 dB/cm for implementation of optical fibre customer access systems. A range of functional micromachined and waveguide elements (eg Y-junction, 3 dB coupler and interferometers) necessary for the transceivers have been fabricated. The waveguide functional elements have been characterized. A V-groove fibre pigtailed 2 by 2 silicon electro optic, switch has been demonstrated with a switch voltage of 2.5 V and current of 50 mA. Micromachined features in both laser diodes and the active silicon integrated optical circuit (ASOC TM) components have been demonstrated with the tolerances necessary to allow efficient coupling between lasers and silicon waveguides.
Technical Approach

The project will draw on recent advances in the manufacturing of ASOC chips based on low loss single mode optical waveguides formed in silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers. These SOI waveguides can potentially be compatible with both single mode optical fibres and edge emitting laser diodes and provide an active electro-optic capability. The quantifiable objectives of the project focus on low cost hybrid technology, high efficiency coupling of laser diodes to optical fibres, and wavelength independent network switching. The emphasis of the project is the demonstration of low cost production techniques. This includes controlling the fabrication tolerance of micro-engineered components within the necessary bounds.

Key Issues

- Defining component specifications from studies of network topology economics.
- Using recent advances in the manufacturing of ASOC chips based on low loss single mode optical waveguides formed in silicon-on-insulator wafers.
- Low cost packaged demonstration components for implementation of optical fibre customer access systems.

Expected Impact

The impact of the project on future telecommunications networks could be a substantial cost reduction in optical network transceivers leading to an economically justified commercial implementation of optical fibre customer access systems.

Coordinator

Bookham Technology Ltd
Address
Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
OX11 0QX Didcot
United Kingdom

Participants (3)

JYDSK TELEFON
Denmark
Address
Sletvej 30
8310 Aarhus-tranbjerg J.
OPTRONICS IRELAND
Ireland
Address
Eolas, Glasnevin
9 Dublin
SOITEC SA
France
Address
Site Technologique Astec
38041 Grenoble