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8 March 2014 A new generation of ultra-dense optical I/O for silicon photonics
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Proceedings Volume 8990, Silicon Photonics IX; 899006 (2014)
Event: SPIE OPTO, 2014, San Francisco, California, United States
In response to the optical packaging needs of a rapidly growing silicon photonics market, Chiral Photonics, Inc. (CPI) has developed a new generation of ultra-dense-channel, bi-directional, all-optical, input/output (I/O) couplers that bridge the data transport gap between standard optical fibers and photonic integrated circuits. These couplers, called Pitch Reducing Optical Fiber Arrays (PROFAs), provide a means to simultaneously match both the mode field and channel spacing (i.e. pitch) between an optical fiber array and a photonic integrated circuit (PIC). Both primary methods for optically interfacing with PICs, via vertical grating couplers (VGCs) and edge couplers, can be addressed with PROFAs. PROFAs bring the signal-carrying cores, either multimode or singlemode, of many optical fibers into close proximity within an all-glass device that can provide low loss coupling to on-chip components, including waveguides, gratings, detectors and emitters. Two-dimensional (2D) PROFAs offer more than an order of magnitude enhancement in channel density compared to conventional one-dimensional (1D) fiber arrays. PROFAs can also be used with low vertical profile solutions that simplify optoelectronic packaging while reducing PIC I/O real estate usage requirements. PROFA technology is based on a scalable production process for microforming glass preform assemblies as they are pulled through a small oven. An innovative fiber design, called the “vanishing core,” enables tailoring the mode field along the length of the PROFA to meet the coupling needs of disparate waveguide technologies, such as fiber and onchip. Examples of single- and multi-channel couplers fabricated using this technology will be presented.
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Mitchell S. Wlodawski, Victor I. Kopp, Jongchul Park, Jonathan Singer, Eric E. Hubner, Daniel Neugroschl, Norman Chao, and Azriel Z. Genack "A new generation of ultra-dense optical I/O for silicon photonics", Proc. SPIE 8990, Silicon Photonics IX, 899006 (8 March 2014);

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