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1 July 2004 Optical MEMS platform for low-cost on-chip integration of planar light circuits and optical switching
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Xerox Corporation has developed a technology platform for on-chip integration of latching MEMS optical waveguide switches and Planar Light Circuit (PLC) components using a Silicon On Insulator (SOI) based process. To illustrate the current state of this new technology platform, working prototypes of a Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexer (ROADM) and a l-router will be presented along with details of the integrated latching MEMS optical switches. On-chip integration of optical switches and PLCs can greatly reduce the size, manufacturing cost and operating cost of multi-component optical equipment. It is anticipated that low-cost, low-overhead optical network products will accelerate the migration of functions and services from high-cost long-haul markets to price sensitive markets, including networks for metropolitan areas and fiber to the home. Compared to the more common silica-on-silicon PLC technology, the high index of refraction of silicon waveguides created in the SOI device layer enables miniaturization of optical components, thereby increasing yield and decreasing cost projections. The latching SOI MEMS switches feature moving waveguides, and are advantaged across multiple attributes relative to alternative switching technologies, such as thermal optical switches and polymer switches. The SOI process employed was jointly developed under the auspice of the NIST APT program in partnership with Coventor, Corning IntelliSense Corp., and MicroScan Systems to enable fabrication of a broad range of free space and guided wave MicroOptoElectroMechanical Systems (MOEMS).
© (2004) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Kristine A. German, Joel Kubby, Jingkuang Chen, James Diehl, Kathleen Feinberg, Peter Gulvin, Larry Herko, Nancy Jia, Pinyen Lin, Xueyuan Liu, Jun Ma, John Meyers, Peter Nystrom, and Yao Rong Wang "Optical MEMS platform for low-cost on-chip integration of planar light circuits and optical switching", Proc. SPIE 5357, Optoelectronic Integration on Silicon, (1 July 2004);

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