In this work we correlate the dimension of the waveguide with small variations of the refractive index of the material
used for the waveguide core. We calculate the effective modal refractive index for different dimensions of the waveguide
and with slightly variation of the refractive index of the core material. These results are used as an input for a set of
Finite Difference Time Domain simulation, directed to study the characteristics of amorphous silicon waveguides
embedded in a SiO2 cladding. The study considers simple linear waveguides with rectangular section for studying the
modal attenuation expected at different wavelengths. Transmission efficiency is determined analyzing the decay of the
light power along the waveguides. As far as near infrared wavelengths are considered, a-Si:H shows a behavior highly
dependent on the light wavelength and its extinction coefficient rapidly increases as operating frequency goes into visible
spectrum range. The simulation results show that amorphous silicon can be considered a good candidate for waveguide
material core whenever the waveguide length is as short as a few centimeters. The maximum transmission length is
highly affected by the a-Si:H defect density, the mid-gap density of states and by the waveguide section area. The
simulation results address a minimum requirement of 300nm×400nm waveguide section in order to keep attenuation
below 1 dB cm-1.
A. Fantoni, P. Lourenço, P. Pinho, and M, Vieira, "FDTD simulation of amorphous silicon waveguides for microphotonics applications," Proc. SPIE 10242, Integrated Optics: Physics and Simulations III, 102420U (Presented at SPIE Optics + Optoelectronics: April 26, 2017; Published: 17 May 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2265571.
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