Presentation at PIC International 2021 are grouped into 5 key themes which collectively provide complete coverage of the global photonics industry.
A LIDAR consists mainly of a laser source, a laser beam scanner, and the detection optics. Pushed by the automotive market, solid-state LIDARs are promising in bringing the cost down while making them more robust, with no moving parts, and compact. PICs offer some very concrete opportunities for LIDAR. In solid-state LIDARs, PICs can be used as the laser source. When combined with the on-chip components typically used in communications technology, pulsed lasers and frequency-modulated lasers can be realized. PICs can also be used to replace the beam-steering part of the LIDAR, through the use of optical phased arrays. Much like phased-array antennas in wireless communications, such optical phased arrays can shape the laser beam and steer it fast for video-rate three-dimensional imaging. The system has no moving components, as compared to using mechanical and micro-mechanical (MEMS) scanning devices, making it robust, and is lens-free. Laboratory based implementations have already shown the feasibility, and the technology is now moving to the market. Sources and detectors can be integrated on the PIC, with the potential of realizing a fully integrated, single-chip LIDAR, and allowing unprecedented high volumes at low cost. The purpose of the panel discussion on PICs for LIDAR is to discuss these unique selling points of PICs with LIDAR manufacturers, TIER-1 suppliers and OEM in automotive and other markets.
Over the past decade, photonic integrated circuits have found a variety of new application areas, including many different types of sensing systems. Photonic integration has enabled new functionality, as well as reduction in size, weight and power (and eventually cost) of these new systems. In this talk, we will provide an overview of a variety of cutting edge PICs for sensing applications, with the focus on some of the recent technology that we have developed in this arena.
Over the last 12 months ficonTEC has been involved in, or is directly responsible for developments that ease access for certain customers, and has gained valuable experience in, and insights into some of the currently topical segments.
Our talk will review silicon photonics market forecasts (datacom, telecom, consumer, automotive and computing), technology trends and supply chain. We forecast the silicon photonics transceiver market will reach more than US$4 billion in 2026. But beyond transceivers, automotive and autonomous driving will benefit from silicon photonics sensing in the future. Moreover, the silicon photonic market could even grow further with a large contribution of consumer healthcare (as Rockley Photonics announced plans for biosensors in smart watches with Apple using silicon photonics). As the market grows, the supply chain continues to consolidate. The silicon photonics eco-system is getting larger with more fabs and foundries, more companies involved in packaging, modelization, PDKs, and designs.
Hybrid PICs offer great design flexibility and enabling optical functionalities that cannot be realized efficiently in monolithic photonic integration platforms. Examples from the PolyBoard platform of Fraunhofer HHI are multilayer waveguide structures for 3D photonic integrated crossing-free switching matrices and optical phased arrays for 3D beam steering in LiDAR applications. By integrating non-reciprocal or nonlinear optical crystals in on-chip free-space sections, isolators and circulators as well as visible light sources for sensing applications can be realized efficiently and cost-effective. Automated assembly processes ensure the scalability of the developed hybrid PICs from single prototypes towards production.
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Enabling high accuracy and long range 4D+ machine perception utilizing integration of 1550nm FMCW LiDARs in silicon photonics
Integrated photonics are becoming a scalable and flexible solution for quantum applications. On one hand, Silicon Nitride (SiN) photonics is gaining more and more attention due to its transparency window from visible (Ion trapping) to SWIR (short wavelength infrared), high power handling, and most importantly, due to its extremely low propagation loss. On the other hand, Si photonics, due to its compactness, and active components like detectors and modulators are also penetrating into the quantum world. PIC based solutions are the ideal platform for applications in the quantum domain, such as quantum key distribution (QKD), quantum computing, and quantum sensing. Yet the development of SiN photonic ICs is still far from a routine workflow. As an R&D hub, imec is one of the pioneers in silicon nitride integrated photonics. In this talk we will explore how to overcome the hurdles on the road to dedicated photonic chip design, manufacturing, and prototyping.
High-sensitivity receivers with internal gain can relieve the link budget challenge in operations of PAM4 and wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) and achieve high energy efficiency for data communication. Here we review the recent progress on the development of low-voltage Si-Ge APD receivers and demonstrate its 60 Gb/s PAM4 modulation. Alternative APD designs are also discussed that is able to further reduce the energy consumption for a data communication link.
Electro-optical circuit boards (EOCB) provide electrical circuits and optical waveguides tightly integrated on a single device. They can thus serve as substrate enabling cost-effective assembly for photonic and electronic ICs. This presentation will discuss recent progress and achievements in developing EOCBs as part of PIC based optical communication devices and will show some novel sensor packaging approaches based on this technology.
Driven by growing demand for data intensive applications in both consumer and commercial areas, increasingly interconnected data-center and telecommunication networks are needed. Photonic Integrated Circuits (PICs) are now at the basis of every high-speed optical transceiver as they offer high value in several technical and economical aspects. Nonetheless further innovation is required to meet market demand for future generations of optical transceivers.
Plasmonics has been researched for almost two decades confirming its extraordinary properties for a range of possible applications including sensors, high-bandwidth data communications and even ultra-low energy and footprint signal processing functions. However, turning plasmonics into a commercially attractive technology has to proceed over CMOS compatible metals and fabrication processes that can seamlessly and cost-effectively bridge plasmonics with CMOS photonic and electronic technologies to ensure volume manufacturing credentials. In this talk, we will present the recent progress in bringing plasmonics into CMOS foundries exploiting Aluminum as the plasmonic metal and highlighting a number of successful applications in high-sensitivity plasmo-photonic sensors and datacommunications accomplished within the H2020 project PlasmoFab, discussing also the perspectives for enabling powerful plasmo-photonic neuromorphic computing engines as is currently pursued within the H2020 project PlasmoNIAC.
LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) is widely considered a necessity for fully automated self-driving automotive applications. LIDAR systems must incorporate either a large number of optical emitters or a means of steering the optical emission across the far field. Due to the density of optical components required, LIDAR is ripe for optical integration in order to achieve miniaturization and scalable manufacturability of this goal. This talk will give an overview of LIDAR system approaches and challenges, and discuss the suitability of silicon photonics to meet these challenges.
Higher performance detectors are required for accurate, small form factor, low-cost, scalable LiDAR systems targeting long and short-range applications. SiPM and SPAD arrays are fast becoming the sensor of choice for both long and short-range LiDAR systems and are displacing legacy detectors such as linear avalanche photodiodes (APDs), owing to their high internal gain enabling single photon sensitivity and excellent uniformity across pixels. ON Semiconductor has a range of SiPM products with industry-leading sensitivity along with a unique Fast output mode which facilitates higher count rates. As the detector becomes more sensitive, the optical and signal chain requirements also change. A particular pain point for system designers, especially those used to working with legacy detectors, is how to start working with SiPMs and integrating them into their system. To ease this engineering design process, ON Semiconductor provides a wide range of evaluation kits which can help customers start making measurements quickly with SiPMs and reference designs which can be leveraged in part or in whole in a new LiDAR design. The kits range from simple readout boards for initial lab evaluation to facilitate learning to more advanced ready-to -use LiDAR reference designs. This presentation will detail the sensors used for direct time-of-flight LiDAR with a focus on the benefits of SiPM technology, along with the evaluation boards available. It will also cover the main types of LiDAR signal chains and the reference designs and kits available to date.
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Photonics touches our daily lives from our cell phones, TVs, illumination to optical communications. As applications and user requirement become more complex, there is a need for integration. The question remains what is the principle driver. Within each market segment there are different requirements in terms of speed, power, efficacy, size and cost. Is the mass production the key driver for increasing the functionality on a photonic chip, or is it the cost, or the application itself. In this panel session we will discuss the challenges faced in different market segments and whether there remain advantages in hybrid and discrete packaging or whether photonic integration is inevitable.
As the market adoption of Silicon Photonics technologies continues to rise, and ever more fabless companies enter the market, there is a clear need for a flexible device prototyping foundry service that retains the ability for device level innovation, and also offers a clear path for volume scaling. Through the use of DUV projection lithography, with the option of high-resolution e-beam lithography, CORNERSTONE offers fabrication processes that can be easily transferred to other foundries for mass production, whilst also being able to mimic advanced technology nodes for high-resolution layers. This talk gives an overview of the CORNERSTONE platform.
The recent advances of Silicon Photonics Integrated Circuits (PICS) into various new markets (datacomms, sensing, AI, LIDAR etc.) has driven a strong demand for indium phosphide (InP) laser sources. Sivers Photonics is well positioned to support this growing Silicon Photonics eco-system by designing and manufacturing highly customised InP laser devices which are well-suited to hybrid integration through automated passive flip-chip assembly processes. The presentation will discuss the key details of Sivers Photonics InP100 manufacturing platform and how it supports the Silicon Photonics eco-system. It will cover the range of InP light sources, including DFB lasers and reflective semiconductor optical amplifiers (RSOAs), that can be manufactured. The presentation will also cover other key features of the platform, which has been developed to support high volume and low-cost applications.
Developing and marketing a product based on a photonic integrated circuit is still a challenging task. While the technology has greatly matured in the last decade, allowing to easily prototype PICs using different software tools, material platforms, foundry processes, multi-project wafers, etc. there are still many challenges when moving these prototypes into a commercial product. This presentation will discuss topics like variations and optimizations towards a design freeze, validated design re-use, standardization and automation on die and wafer level opto-electronic testing, and assembly qualification.
Recently, we have seen a tremendous progress in the development of photonic-based sensors for many applications. Silicon photonics can provide inexpensive photonic chips due to excellent electronic and photonic properties for sensing, computing and communication. CEA - Leti versatile photonic platform offers a broad range of processes with up-to-date industrial equipment. More than silicon is provided, with the integration of amorphous Si, SiGe, Ge, SiN layers and III-V bonded epi layer on the same wafer covering from visible to Mid-IR. This talk will review the fabrication capabilities offered by our platform, which allows large-scale integration of active and passive devices in a flexible CMOS compatible process.
Minimising optical losses in a PIC is a key for almost all applications. I will give an overview of the base components of LIGENTEC low loss silicon nitride platform. Furthermore, I will show application examples in Quantum, LiDAR and sensing, where these base components are crucial to be low loss.
The silicon nitride waveguide platform TriPleX™ excels in low loss Photonic Integrated Circuits. Combining it, via hybrid integration, with other active PIC platforms enables new applications in a broad wavelength range. The presentation will show the latest developments in the nitride platform and examples of these hybrid modules in different application domains. These range from bio-photonic sensing to microwave photonics for 5G. High power ultra-narrow linewidth lasers will be an essential building block in this and in addition the multi project wafer access to the technology for the different wavelength ranges is presented.
Photonic integrated circuit (PIC) design and fabrication have now gained “ready-for-production” status, and the only obstacle to unleashing their true potential lies with efficient testing. As a leading developer of T&M equipment, EXFO has long been committed to providing superior tools for spectral characterization of photonic integrated circuits designed for the telecom wavelength range. This presentation will cover the challenges of testing these components directly on the wafer, EXFO’s range of spectral test solutions—which provide both fast and reliable results—and ways to future proof PIC testing solutions.
Two-photon-polymerization can be used for the direct printing of complex micro- and mesoscale 3D parts. These parts can be transparent, have optical-quality surfaces, and be printed on pre-structured surfaces. We will present recent results from internal and publicly funded projects that apply this technology to facilitate optical packaging.
Direct-detection links have historically been more cost-effective over coherent links below a bandwidth-distance product of 6000 Gbps-km. To ensure continued adoption and success in both coherent and direct-detection links, PIC technology needs to align with traditional market models such as pay-as-you-grow. New applications such as high-radix switches will shape PIC configuration choices of density and degree of parallelism. We will review emerging sub-segments such as optical tiles, remote laser sources, and fiber interconnect hardware. We will examine the potential future co-existence of pluggable optical modules with co-packaged optics.
Versatile design tools for integrated photonics and optoelectronics need to support a diversity of technologies addressing very different types of applications. This imposes stringent requirements on software environments, especially on circuit simulators emulating the characteristics of the components to be developed. We present an easily extensible simulation platform that allows in particular to integrate third-party tool capabilities and lab characterization information into a seamless simulation workflow. We illustrate its value for nonlinear photonics and quantum communication applications, the virtual testing of photonic chip characteristics, and the electrical and optical codesign of component and system solutions.
The full-scale commercialization of silicon-photonic integrated circuits(S-PICs) demands killer applications where the silicon-based manufacturability is critical as in traditional IC markets. Given the size of the huge autonomous driving market, it is noteworthy that the light detection and ranging(LiDAR) may drive large-scale commercialization of the S-PICs. This presentation addresses cost-effective high-power laser-on-silicon technology, which is well suited for S-PIC-based LiDARs. The laser-on-silicon technology adopts a bulk silicon substrate which is cheaper and has better heat dissipation, thereby improving optical output powers from multiple lasers integrated in a single process.
As PIC technology matures, it is essential to accurately simulate imperfect components, circuits and systems to account for the vagaries of volume manufacturing. We show how to increase yields by designing robust - yet high performance - components using inverse design methods. We also show state of the art photonic circuit and system design flows that enable statistical analysis to rapidly identify and solve the root issues impacting manufacturing yield. We show how these methods can be applied in PIC applications from datacoms and sensing to quantum information technologies.
Fiber optic connectivity remains one of the main challenges for photonic integrated circuits. Emerging applications in the datacenter and in optical communication networks are drivers for new requirements of connectivity solutions that need fundamental innovations on the fiber and connector side. We will present recent advancements in fiber development optimized for PIC interconnects as well as emerging optical connectors.
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After 30 years of R&D, photonic integrated circuits (PICs) are finally ready to serve the general consumer marketplace. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will provide the first entry vector, for 3 reasons: 1. Power Consumption - The extreme market pressure to move AI to the network edge places serious demands on the power efficiency of computational hardware. Thanks to fundamental physical differences, as well as certain power amortization characteristics, photonic computing engines have an inherent 1,000x advantage over their electronic counterparts. 2. Fault Tolerance - Current generation photonic computing architectures use low precision analog techniques for performing matrix-vector multiplication, which limits their general applicability. However, they are a perfect fit for AI algorithms, which are not only tolerant of computational errors, but often introduce them purposefully, for increased robustness. 3. Computational Requirements - The raw computational horsepower needed to support near-term future AI needs is immense. And photonics alone is equipped to fulfill those needs at an acceptable rate of power consumption.
The optical market is in the midst of a period of strong growth, driven by an explosion of data traffic and the emergence of a new set of companies with data-centric business models. This presentation will explore drivers and opportunities for growth in the datacom, transport, network and the emerging 5G wireless markets, along with the future trends for these applications. It will also address the advantages and disadvantages of PIC devices, their most likely applications and the use of compound semiconductor technologies in PICs, as well as in the broader optical market.
In this talk we will look into the specific requirements for passive chips for mux and demux functions in CWDM 400Gb datacenter application, DWDM Datacenter interconnects and 5G backhaul and fronthaul applications. New products that emerge for these new application areas are ultra wide band AWGs and low loss AWGs. Design and fabrication challenges will be discussed.
How is photonics design automation (PDA) adapting to the needs of the maturing market of integrated photonics? In this presentation we illustrate which pitfalls to avoid when setting up a design flow, and how modern PDA is gradually adopting to those needs. We advocate that it’s crucial to invest in proper library management and design automation, to speed up time to market, speed up consecutive runs, and make less mistakes in general. And as an overall result, this reduces time to market and allows your team to get a competitive advantage.
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PICs play a key role in enabling high bandwidth communication networks. This talk will present the role of InP PIC technology along with co-developed digital-signal-processing and driver ASICs in a vertically integrated approach towards delivering the best-in-class optical networking solutions. The rich set of integrated functionalities combined with design tools, process design kits and manufacturing capabilities are well suited to service a wide variety of applications
There is a triple demand for increased power efficiency. Firstly, today’s applications are demanding lower power consumption. Secondly, as speeds increase, power consumption tends to increase, so more efficiency is needed to stay even. Thirdly, photonics integration is both an answer and a challenge for power: Integration as an answer minimizes the excess power needed for interconnection between functions which is very important, however, the challenge is that the greater thermal density that results from integration can be an additional reason power needs to be mitigated. Electro-optic polymers offer power efficiency due to their high electro-optic coefficients which lead to low voltage requirements for very high speed performance.
The performance increase of established Von Neumann computing systems has been defined by the scaling of silicon chip technology according to Moore’s law as well as advances in assembly and system integration concepts. While these scaling paths run into technological and commercial challenges, these types of systems are not well suited to process the enormous amounts of unstructured data generated nowadays. Analog synaptic signal processing holds the promise for massive performance and power-efficiency enhancements in neuromorphic computing. Memristive and photonic concepts and technologies will be presented.
With quantum-based encryption nearing commercialization, and quantum computing being actively investigated, with very promising progress, the potential role that photonics plays in this Second Quantum Revolution becomes increasingly clear. And it is a large role! It is also evident that photonic integration is the path forward here, not only for volume-scaling, but most notably as the key enabler: only PICs can credibly offer the required stability and the unprecedented need for low-loss operation. However, to go forward and make this a reality, we need to leverage investments in Open Access PIC platforms.
To meet the needs of the networking industry, optical transceiver manufacturing needs to be capable of scaling in both cost and performance. To address this challenge, Juniper Networks’ silicon photonics targets manufacturing optical transceivers in the electronics ecosystem, leveraging design, wafer manufacturing, packaging, and test infrastructure and methodologies from the ecosystem. The ability to incorporate all optical components within a single, common silicon die is a key enabler of the approach, fundamentally changing and simplifying how an optical transceiver can be assembled and tested. We will review lessons learned to date and provide a preview of the road ahead.