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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Michael Duncan
  • Vol. 14, Iss. 26 — Dec. 25, 2006
  • pp: 12803–12813

Reduced loss through improved fabrication for single air interface bends in polymer waveguides

Yongbin Lin, Jaime Cardenas, Seunghyun Kim, and Gregory P. Nordin  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 26, pp. 12803-12813 (2006)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.14.012803


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Abstract

We have previously demonstrated high efficiency small-area 45° single air interface waveguide bends in a perfluorocyclobutyl (PFCB) material system [Opt. Express 12, 5314 (2004)]. In this paper we show how the loss per bend can be decreased through improved bend interface position accuracy and sidewall smoothness. This is achieved with electron-beam lithography (EBL) in a scanning electron microscope (SEM) at the cost of increased fabrication complexity compared to our previous work based on a UV contact mask aligner. Using the EBL-based fabrication process, the measured loss per bend decreases from 0.33 dB/bend to 0.124 dB/bend (97.2% bend efficiency) for TE polarization (electric field in plane) and from 0.30 dB/bend to 0.166 dB/bend (96.2% bend efficiency) for TM polarization (electric field out of plane). Since the alignment accuracy and patterning capability within a single exposure field for our low-end electron-beam lithography approach is comparable to what is achievable in high-end stepper tools, the significance of this work is that very low loss air trench bends in low refractive index and low refractive index contrast waveguide materials should be achievable using a conventional high volume microfabrication toolset.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(130.0130) Integrated optics : Integrated optics
(130.1750) Integrated optics : Components
(130.2790) Integrated optics : Guided waves
(130.3120) Integrated optics : Integrated optics devices
(250.5300) Optoelectronics : Photonic integrated circuits
(260.6970) Physical optics : Total internal reflection

ToC Category:
Integrated Optics

History
Original Manuscript: November 10, 2006
Revised Manuscript: December 12, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: December 12, 2006
Published: December 22, 2006

Citation
Yongbin Lin, Jaime Cardenas, Seunghyun Kim, and Gregory P. Nordin, "Reduced loss through improved fabrication for single air interface bends in polymer waveguides," Opt. Express 14, 12803-12813 (2006)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-14-26-12803


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References

  1. L. Li, G. P. Nordin, J. M. English, and J. Jiang, "Small-area bends and beamsplitters for low-index-contrast waveguides," Opt. Express 11,282-290 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. J. Cardenas, S. Kim, and G. P. Nordin, "Compact low loss single air interface bends in polymer waveguides," Opt. Express 12,5314-5324 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. D. W. Smith, Jr., S. Chen, S. Kumar, J. Ballato, H. Shah, C. Topping, and S. H. Foulger, "Perfluorocyclobutyl Copolymers for Microphotonics," S. Adv. Mater. 14, pp. 1585-1589 (2002). [CrossRef]
  4. D. W. Smith, Jr., A. B. Hoeglund, H. V. Shah, M. J. Radler, C. A. Langhoff, "Perfluorocyclobutane Polymers for Optical Fibers and Dielectric Waveguides," in Optical Polymers, J. Harmon, ed., ACS Symp. Ser. 795, Chap. 4, pp. 49-62 (2001). [CrossRef]
  5. J. Ballato, D. W. SmithJr, and S. H. Foulger, "Optical Properties of Perfluorocyclobutyl (PFCB) Polymers," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 20, 1838-1843 (2003). [CrossRef]
  6. M. J. Madou, "Lithography," in Fundamentals of Microfabrication: The Science of Miniaturization, 2nd ed. (CRC Press, Fla., 2002) pp. 28-29.

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