An ultra-compact hybrid plasmonic waveguide ring electro-optical modulator is designed to be easily fabricated on silicon on insulator (SOI) substrates using standard silicon photonics technology. The proposed waveguide is based on a buried standard silicon waveguide of height 220 nm topped with polymer and metal. The key advantage of this novel design is that only the silicon layer of the waveguide is structured as a coupled ring resonator. Then, the device is covered with electro-optical polymer and metal in post processes with no need for lithography or accurate mask alignment techniques. The simple fabrication method imposes many design challenges to obtain a resonator of reasonable loaded quality factor and high extinction ratio. Here, the performance of the resonator is optimized in the telecom wavelength range around 1550 nm using 3D FDTD simulations. The design of the coupling junction between the access waveguide and the tightly bent ring is thoroughly studied. The extension of the metal over the coupling region is exploited to make the critical dimension of the design geometry at least 2.5 times larger than conventional plasmonic resonators and the design is thus more robust. In this paper, we demonstrate an electro-optical modulator that offers an insertion loss < 1 dB, a modulation depth of ~12 dB for an applied peak to peak voltage of only 2 V and energy consumption of ~1.74 fJ/bit. The performance is superior to previously reported hybrid plasmonic ring resonator based modulators while the design shows robustness and low fabrication cost.
Aya O. Zaki, Khaled A. Kirah, and Mohamed A. Swillam, "Metal-capped silicon organic micro-ring electro-optical modulator (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10107, Smart Photonic and Optoelectronic Integrated Circuits XIX, 101070Q (Presented at SPIE OPTO: February 02, 2017; Published: 28 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2254285.5393342314001.
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