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20 April 2015 The relationship between polymer waveguide optical interconnection end facet roughness and the optical input and output coupling losses
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Abstract
The RMS surface roughness of an optical polymer waveguide end facet cut by a milling router and measured by AFM is investigated for a range of rotation speeds and translation speeds of the router. It was found that 1 flute (cutting edge) routers gave significantly less rough surfaces than 2 or 3 flute routers. The best results were achieved for a 1 flute router when the milling bit was inserted from the copper layer side of the board with a rotation speed of 15,000 rpm and a translation speed of 0.25 m/min which minimized the waveguide core end facet RMS roughness to 183 ± 8 nm and gave input optical coupling loss of 1.7 dB ± 0.5 dB and output optical coupling loss of 2.0 dB ± 0.7 dB. The relationship between optical coupling loss at the input and output of the waveguides and waveguide end facet roughness is also investigated in this paper. The ratio of RMS roughness to autocorrelation length of the roughness is shown to have a quantified linear relationship with experimental measurements of optical insertion loss, input optical coupling loss and output optical coupling loss. A new fabrication technique for cut waveguide end facet treatment has been proposed and demonstrated which reduces the insertion loss by 2.60 dB ± 1.3 dB which is more than that achieved by the closest available index matching fluid which gave 2.23 dB ± 1.2 dB and which is far more robust for use in commercial products.
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Hadi Baghsiahi, Kai Wang, Richard Pitwon, and David R. Selviah "The relationship between polymer waveguide optical interconnection end facet roughness and the optical input and output coupling losses", Proc. SPIE 9360, Organic Photonic Materials and Devices XVII, 93600O (20 April 2015); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2079571
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