This paper presents the design, fabrication and performance of a 1×2 piezoelectric optical switch. The optical switch is
developed based on the concept that the input fiber is directly moved by the deflection of a piezoelectric tube actuator.
The piezoelectric tube actuator used in this switch is manufactured through an electrophoretic deposition process. The
tube is inexpensive to produce and compact in size with high mechanical performance. It has a maximum deflection of
30μm which is capable to actuate the input fiber for switching. The multimode fiber optical switch has been successfully
assembled. To reduce the misalignment loss between the fibers, the output fibers are precisely aligned in silicon vgrooves.
Different components are bonded with low shrinkage adhesive in order to minimize their position inaccuracy.
The performance characteristics of the optical switch have been measured, with an insertion loss of 1dB, crosstalk of -45dB and switching speed from 5 to 10ms. The switch also shows good reliability and requires small driving power. The
development of multimode optical switch prototypes proves that the idea of piezoelectric switching is feasible. Further
developments include the improvement of switching performance, reduction of the prototype size and the fabrication of
multiple output prototypes.