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Authors: K. Van Acoleyen, J. Roels, P. Mechet, T. Claes, D. Van Thourhout, R. Baets
Title: Ultra-compact phase modulator based on a cascade of NEMS-operated slot waveguides fabricated in Silicon-On-Insulator
Format: International Journal
Publication date: 5/2012
Journal/Conference/Book: IEEE Photonics Journal
Volume(Issue): 4(3) p.779-788
DOI: 10.1109/jphot.2012.2198880
Citations: 43 ( - last update: 14/7/2024)
25 (OpenCitations - last update: 10/5/2024)
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Phase modulation is one of the key functionalities in an integrated photonics circuit. In the silicon photonics platform several approaches have been undertaken. The thermo-optic effect is slow and relatively power hungry while a carrier-based approach is fast (>Gbps) but lossy and weak. Integration of other (e.g. electro-optic) materials typically struggles with fabrication issues which limit the effect. Here, we present a nano-electromechanical systems based approach. By applying a voltage over a free-standing slot waveguide, the slot width will change resulting in an effective index change and thus a phase change. Using a cascaded structure, the effect can be enlarged without reducing the speed. A phase change of 40° was observed for a voltage of 13 V over a cascade of three 5.8 µm long free-standing slots. The expected speed is in the MHz range.

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