We report on the implementation of a dense 512-beam free-space optical interconnect linking four optoelectronic VLSI chips at the backplane level. The system presented maximizes the positioning tolerances of the components by use of slow <i>f</i>-number (<i>f</i>/16) Gaussian beams and oversized apertures. A beam-clustering scheme whereby a 4 × 4 array of beams is transmitted by each minilens is used to provide a high channel density. A modular approach is used to decrease the number of degrees of freedom in the system and achieve passive alignment of the modules in the final integration phase. A design overview as well as assembly and experimental results are presented.
© 2002 Optical Society of America
Frederic Lacroix, Eric Bernier, Michael H. Ayliffe, Frank A. P. Tooley, David V. Plant, and Andrew G. Kirk, "Implementation of a Compact, Four-Stage, Scalable Optical Interconnect for Photonic Backplane Applications," Appl. Opt. 41, 1541-1555 (2002)