OSA's Digital Library

Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Michael Duncan
  • Vol. 12, Iss. 19 — Sep. 20, 2004
  • pp: 4589–4595
« Show journal navigation

Direct laser writing of thermally stabilized channel waveguides with Bragg gratings

Hiroaki Nishiyama, Isamu Miyamoto, Shin-ichi Matsumoto, Mitsunori Saito, Kenji Kintaka, and Junji Nishii  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 12, Issue 19, pp. 4589-4595 (2004)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OPEX.12.004589


View Full Text Article

Acrobat PDF (163 KB)





Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


   


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools

Share
Citations

Abstract

Thermally stabilized photo-induced channel waveguides with Bragg gratings were fabricated in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films by exposure with KrF excimer laser and successive annealing at 600°C. The annealing reversed the photo-induced refractive index pattern and also enhanced its thermal stability. The stabilized channel waveguide with a Bragg grating showed diffraction efficiency of 18.0 dB and 18.7 dB for TE- and TM-like modes, respectively. The diffraction efficiencies and wavelengths for both modes never changed after heat treatment at 500°C, whereas the conventional photo-induced grating decayed even at 200°C.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

1. Introduction

Photo-induced refractive index change in oxide glasses is used widely to fabricate optical elements such as channel waveguides and gratings by the use of direct laser writing. This technique presents advantages compared to other complicated fabrication process including lithography and dry etching. So far, optical elements written using KrF excimer laser, femtosecond laser, and others have been reported [1–5

1. K. O. Hill, P. St. J. Russell, G. Meltz, and A. M. Vengsarkar, “Fiber Bragg grating technology fundamentals and overview,” J. Lightwave Technol. 15, 1263–1276 (1997). [CrossRef]

]. Nevertheless, the thermal stability of elements that are fabricated using direct laser writing techniques is much lower than that by the conventional lithography and etching techniques [4

4. A. M. Streltsov and N. F. Borrelli, “Study of femtosecond-laser-written waveguides in glasses,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 19, 2496–2504 (2002). [CrossRef]

,6–9

6. T. Erdogan, V. Mizrahi, P. J. Lemaire, and D. Monroe, “Decay of ultraviolet-induced fiber Bragg gratings,” J. Appl. Phys. 76, 73–80 (1994). [CrossRef]

]. For example, the thermal decay in photo-induced refractive index change in Ge-B-SiO2 core fibers using a pulse light source at 244 nm wavelength reportedly started even at temperatures below 150°C [9

9. M. Douay, W. X. Xie, T. Taunay, P. Bernage, P. Niay, P. Cordier, B. Poumellec, L. Dong, J. F. Bayon, H. Poignant, and E. Delevaque, “Densification involved in the UV-based photosensitivity of silica glasses and optical fibers,” J. Lightwave. Technol. 15, 1329–1342 (1997). [CrossRef]

]. Moreover, photo-induced refractive index change in hydrogen-loaded fibers began to be erased at much lower temperatures than that in non-loaded ones [10

10. J. Rathje, M. Kristensen, and J. E. Pedersen, “Continuous anneal method for characterizing the thermal stability of ultraviolet Bragg gratings,” J. Appl. Phys. 88, 1050–1055 (2000). [CrossRef]

,11

11. H. Patrick, S. L. Gilbert, A. Lidgard, and M. D. Gallagher, “Annealing of Bragg gratings in hydrogen-loaded optical fiber,” J. Appl. Phys. 78, 2940–2945 (1995). [CrossRef]

]. Such thermal decay limits the application of devices fabricated by the direct laser writing technique.

We have presented a novel approach for thermally stabilized photo-induced refractive index change in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films [12

12. J. Nishii, K. Kintaka, H. Nishiyama, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, “Thermally stabilized photoinduced Bragg gratings,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 2364–2366 (2002). [CrossRef]

,13

13. H. Nishiyama, K. Kintaka, J. Nishii, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, “Thermo- and Photo-sensitive GeO2-B2O3-SiO2 thin glass films,” Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 42, 559–563 (2003). [CrossRef]

]. A photo-induced grating (PG) in the film, which used the increase in refractive index in the irradiated region, decayed remarkably after annealing at temperatures below 500°C. However, subsequent annealing at 600°C reversed the photo-induced refractive index pattern of the PG, namely, refractive index in the unirradiated region became higher than that in the irradiated one after annealing, yielding a new type of grating with higher diffraction efficiency and thermal stability than that before annealing. We named such a grating, which is induced by the annealing, a thermally stabilized grating (TG). In this study, we fabricated the thermally stabilized channel waveguides with TGs by laser irradiation and successive annealing. Diffraction efficiencies and diffraction wavelengths of the TG in the channel waveguide never changed after heat treatment at 500°C for 1 h.

2. Experimental

2.1. Preparation of Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films and photo-induced gratings

Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films of 4 μm thickness were deposited on silica glass substrates using the plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition method (PD-10C; Samco International Co. Ltd.). Liquid sources of Si(OC2H5)4, Ge(OCH3)4, and B(OC2H5)3 were used as raw materials for SiO2, GeO2, and B2O3, respectively. Vapors of source materials were introduced with oxygen gas into a chamber and then decomposed using oxygen plasma. The plasma was enhanced using a radio frequency of 13.56 MHz with 250 W. The inner pressure was 53 Pa; the temperature was kept at 400°C. Compositions of thin films were analyzed using electron probe microanalysis (EPMA: JCMA-733; JEOL). The refractive index, thickness, and propagation loss were measured using the prism coupling method (Model 2010; Metricon Corp.). Photo-induced gratings with a period of 530 nm were written by irradiation with a KrF excimer laser (COMPex102; Lambda Physik) of 248 nm wavelength through a phase mask at room temperature without hydrogen loading. The photon density and shot number for the grating writing were fixed at 80 mJ/cm2/pulse and 12 000 shots, respectively.

2.2. Fabrication of a channel waveguide with a Bragg grating

Channel waveguides with TGs were fabricated using irradiation with a KrF excimer laser and subsequent annealing. First, a 5-mm-long PG was written in a thin film. Then, irradiation through a Cr mask with a straight line pattern of 6 μm width on a silica glass substrate was carried out under the condition of the photon density of 180 mJ/cm2/pulse and a shot number of 27 000. Finally, this specimen was annealed at 600°C for 20 min.Thermal annealing was performed in a tube furnace with a nitrogen atmosphere. Transmission spectra of channel waveguides were measured with an optical spectrum analyzer using a wavelength tunable laser diode as a light source. The incident beam was butt-coupled into channel waveguides using a commercial single-mode optical fiber with a numerical aperture of 0.15.

3. Results and discussion

Fig. 1. Changes in refractive indices at 632.8 nm wavelength of the unirradiated film and the homogeneously irradiated film as a function of an annealing time at 600°C. Irradiation was performed with KrF excimer laser under the condition of the photon density of 180 mJ/cm2/pulse and a shot number of 27 000.
Fig. 2. Schematic fabrication processes of a thermally stabilized channel waveguide with TG by irradiation with KrF excimer laser and thermal annealing. The refractive index distribution in Ge-B-SiO2 thin film at each process is also shown. The refractive index in the unirradiated region became higher than that of the irradiated one after annealing for longer than 10 min, in contrast with the case before annealing.
Fig. 3. Near-field pattern of the output beam from a thermally stabilized channel waveguide when the light of 1550 nm in wavelength was coupled. The height and width of the core were 4 μm and 6 μm, respectively.

Thermally stabilized channel waveguides with TGs were fabricated using irradiation with a KrF excimer laser and subsequent annealing in a 15GeO2-5B2O3-80SiO2 (mol%) thin film. The fabrication processes mentioned in the section 2.2 and the expected refractive index distribution at each process are shown schematically in Fig. 2. These processes induced a channel waveguide structure with a 4-μm-high and 6-μm-wide core because annealing at 600°C removed the photo-induced refractive index increase and then rendered the refractive index of the unirradiated region higher than that of the irradiated one, as shown in Fig. 1. The identical waveguide structure will be obtained if the step (b) was performed prior to the step (a) in Fig. 2. Annealing at 600°C increased the propagation loss. The propagation loss of the film before and after annealing for 1 h was 0.4 and 1.4 dB/cm at 1545 nm in wavelength, respectively. The increase in loss should be attributed to the precipitation of Ge nanoparticles.

Figure 3 shows the near-field image of the output beam when the light at 1550 nm wavelength was coupled to the channel waveguide. The elliptical shape of the output beam was mainly responsible for the asymmetrical core structure because the refractive index difference between core and cladding regions for the vertical direction was larger than that for the in-plane direction. In addition, the anisotropic stresses in the channel waveguide may be one of the causes for the asymmetrical shape of the output beam. It was inferred from Fig. 1 that the refractive index difference between core and cladding regions for the in-plane direction was approximately 1.2 × 10-3 at 632.8 nm in wavelength.

Figure 4 shows transmission spectra of the channel waveguide. Diffraction peaks of 18.0 dB and 18.7 dB for the TE-like mode and TM-like mode were clearly visible: they were located at 1532.7 nm and 1533.1 nm in wavelength, respectively. These peaks indicate that annealing at 600°C induced not only a channel structure, but also TG. Only one peak was observed for each polarization mode, meaning that a single-mode channel waveguide was attained. Polarization dependence of the diffracted wavelengths is probably attributable to the asymmetrical core structure. It is considered that annealing at 600°C induced the TG only in the channel structure because the homogeneous irradiation in Fig. 2(b) was continued until the PG in the cladding area was completely erased.

Fig. 4. Transmission spectra of a thermally stabilized channel waveguide with TG for TE-and TM-like modes. Diffraction peaks of 18.0 dB and 18.7 dB for TE-like and TM-like modes were observed, which were located at 1532.7 nm and 1533.1 nm, respectively.

Figures 5(a) and 5(b) show changes in diffraction efficiencies and diffraction wavelengths, respectively, of the channel waveguide with TG after heat treatment up to 500°C. For comparison, experimental results were also plotted for a PG in a channel waveguide with 3GeO2-11B2O3-86SiO2 (mol%) core and SiO2 cladding fabricated by the photolithography and dry etching processes. The annealing time was 1 h at each temperature. Diffraction efficiencies for the PG decreased and the peak positions shifted to a shorter wavelength with temperature increase, which is caused by thermal decay in photo-induced refractive index change [14

14. H. Nishiyama, I. Miyamoto, S. Matsumoto, M. Saito, K. Fukumi, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, “Periodic precipitation of crystalline Ge nanoparticles in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films”, submitted to Appl. Phys. Lett.

]. In particular, the PG was erased completely after heat treatment up to 400°C. It is noteworthy that no remarkable changes in diffraction efficiencies and peak positions of the TG were observed even after heat treatment at 500°C. Several researchers so far have reported thermal stabilization treatments on fiber Bragg gratings with various glass compositions [14–16

14. H. Nishiyama, I. Miyamoto, S. Matsumoto, M. Saito, K. Fukumi, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, “Periodic precipitation of crystalline Ge nanoparticles in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films”, submitted to Appl. Phys. Lett.

]. Although such stabilization treatments reduced the rate of decay, the amplitude of photo-induced refractive index change became much lower than that before heat treatment. Therefore, the laser irradiation followed by the annealing to Ge-B-SiO2 films is an effective means to form a highly thermally stabilized photo-induced channel waveguide with a grating. Optimization of irradiation and annealing conditions will realize a channel waveguide with a grating with more intense confinement of the guided light, higher diffraction efficiency, and thermal stability.

Fig. 5. Changes in (a) diffraction efficiencies and (b) diffraction wavelengths for TE-and TM-like modes of a thermally stabilized channel waveguide with TG after heat treatment up to 500°C. For comparison, the experimental results for a channel waveguide with a PG are also plotted. Annealing time was 1 h at each temperature.

4. Conclusions

Thermally stabilized photo-induced channel waveguides with Bragg gratings were formed using irradiation and successive annealing at 600°C. The stabilized waveguide with a grating showed diffraction peaks of 18.0 dB for the TE-like mode and 18.7 dB for the TM-like mode, respectively. Neither diffraction peaks nor diffraction wavelengths changed after heat treatment up to 500°C, whereas diffraction efficiencies of the conventional PG decayed after heat treatment at temperatures as low as 200°C. The fabrication process described in this paper, while the long time irradiation or high laser dose may be required for the large scale optical waveguide, is much advantageous compared with the conventional process using photolithography and dry etching. Thermally stabilized photo-induced optical elements in Ge-B-SiO2 thin films should be applicable to optical devices such as sensors operating at high temperature.

References and links

1.

K. O. Hill, P. St. J. Russell, G. Meltz, and A. M. Vengsarkar, “Fiber Bragg grating technology fundamentals and overview,” J. Lightwave Technol. 15, 1263–1276 (1997). [CrossRef]

2.

D. Milanese, M. Ferraris, Y. Menke, M. Olivero, G. Perrone, C. B. E. Gawith, G. Brambilla, P. G. R. Smith, and E. R. Taylor, “Photosensitive properties of a tin-doped sodium silicate glass for direct ultraviolet writing,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 84, 3259–3261 (2004). [CrossRef]

3.

K. P. Chen, P. R. Herman, R. Taylor, and C. Hnatovsky, “Vacuum-ultraviolet laser-induced refractive-index change and birefringence in standard optical fibers,” J. Lightwave. Technol. 21, 1969–1977 (2003). [CrossRef]

4.

A. M. Streltsov and N. F. Borrelli, “Study of femtosecond-laser-written waveguides in glasses,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 19, 2496–2504 (2002). [CrossRef]

5.

D. A. Guilhot, G. D. Emmerson, C. B. E. Gawith, S. P. Watts, D. P. Shepherd, R. B. Williams, and P. G. R. Smith, ”Single-mode direct-ultraviolet-written channel waveguide laser in neodymium-doped silica on silicon,” Opt. Lett. 29, 947–949 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

6.

T. Erdogan, V. Mizrahi, P. J. Lemaire, and D. Monroe, “Decay of ultraviolet-induced fiber Bragg gratings,” J. Appl. Phys. 76, 73–80 (1994). [CrossRef]

7.

M. Lancry, P. Niay, S. Bailleux, M. Douay, C. Depecker, P. Cordier, and I. Riant, “Thermal stability of the 248-nm-induced presensitization process in standard H2-loaded germanosilicate fibers,” Appl. Opt. 41, 7197–7204 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

8.

S. R. Baker, H. N. Rourke, V. Baker, and D. Goodchild, “Thermal decay of fiber Bragg gratings written in boron and germanium codoped silica fiber,” J. Lightwave Technol. 15, 1470–1477 (1997). [CrossRef]

9.

M. Douay, W. X. Xie, T. Taunay, P. Bernage, P. Niay, P. Cordier, B. Poumellec, L. Dong, J. F. Bayon, H. Poignant, and E. Delevaque, “Densification involved in the UV-based photosensitivity of silica glasses and optical fibers,” J. Lightwave. Technol. 15, 1329–1342 (1997). [CrossRef]

10.

J. Rathje, M. Kristensen, and J. E. Pedersen, “Continuous anneal method for characterizing the thermal stability of ultraviolet Bragg gratings,” J. Appl. Phys. 88, 1050–1055 (2000). [CrossRef]

11.

H. Patrick, S. L. Gilbert, A. Lidgard, and M. D. Gallagher, “Annealing of Bragg gratings in hydrogen-loaded optical fiber,” J. Appl. Phys. 78, 2940–2945 (1995). [CrossRef]

12.

J. Nishii, K. Kintaka, H. Nishiyama, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, “Thermally stabilized photoinduced Bragg gratings,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 2364–2366 (2002). [CrossRef]

13.

H. Nishiyama, K. Kintaka, J. Nishii, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, “Thermo- and Photo-sensitive GeO2-B2O3-SiO2 thin glass films,” Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 42, 559–563 (2003). [CrossRef]

14.

H. Nishiyama, I. Miyamoto, S. Matsumoto, M. Saito, K. Fukumi, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, “Periodic precipitation of crystalline Ge nanoparticles in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films”, submitted to Appl. Phys. Lett.

15.

H. Nishiyama, E. Ohmura, I. Miyamoto, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, “Formation of the Bragg gratings attributed to the phase separation of Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films”, in Proceedings of Microoptics Conference, Paper L-12, Jena, Germany (2004).

16.

B. O. Guan, H. Y. Tam, X. M. Tao, and X. Y. Dong, “Highly stable fiber Bragg gratings written in hydrogen-loaded fiber,” IEEE. Photon. Technol. Lett. 12, 1349–1351 (2000). [CrossRef]

17.

G. Brambilla, “Enhanced thermal stability of strong gratings written in H-loaded tin-phosphosilicate optical fibers,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 4151–4153 (2002). [CrossRef]

18.

Y. Shen, T. Sun, K. T. V. Grattan, and M. Sun, “Highly photosensitive Sb Er Ge-codoped silica fiber for writing fiber Bragg gratings with strong high-temperature sustainability,” Opt. Lett. 28, 2025–2027 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

OCIS Codes
(160.2750) Materials : Glass and other amorphous materials
(220.4610) Optical design and fabrication : Optical fabrication
(230.1950) Optical devices : Diffraction gratings
(230.7370) Optical devices : Waveguides

ToC Category:
Research Papers

History
Original Manuscript: August 18, 2004
Revised Manuscript: September 13, 2004
Published: September 20, 2004

Citation
Hiroaki Nishiyama, Isamu Miyamoto, Shin-ichi Matsumoto, Mitsunori Saito, Kenji Kintaka, and Junji Nishii, "Direct laser writing of thermally stabilized channel waveguides with Bragg gratings," Opt. Express 12, 4589-4595 (2004)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-12-19-4589


Sort:  Journal  |  Reset  

References

  1. K. O. Hill, P. St. J. Russell, G. Meltz, and A. M. Vengsarkar, �??Fiber Bragg grating technology fundamentals and overview,�?? J. Lightwave Technol. 15, 1263-1276 (1997). [CrossRef]
  2. D. Milanese, M. Ferraris, Y. Menke, M. Olivero, G. Perrone, C. B. E. Gawith, G. Brambilla, P. G. R. Smith, and E. R. Taylor, �??Photosensitive properties of a tin-doped sodium silicate glass for direct ultraviolet writing,�?? Appl. Phys. Lett. 84, 3259-3261 (2004). [CrossRef]
  3. K. P. Chen, P. R. Herman, R. Taylor, and C. Hnatovsky, �??Vacuum-ultraviolet laser-induced refractive-index change and birefringence in standard optical fibers,�?? J. Lightwave. Technol. 21, 1969-1977 (2003). [CrossRef]
  4. A. M. Streltsov, and N. F. Borrelli, �??Study of femtosecond-laser-written waveguides in glasses,�?? J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 19, 2496-2504 (2002). [CrossRef]
  5. D. A. Guilhot, G. D. Emmerson, C. B. E. Gawith, S. P. Watts, D. P. Shepherd, R. B. Williams, and P. G. R. Smith, �??Single-mode direct-ultraviolet-written channel waveguide laser in neodymium-doped silica on silicon,�?? Opt. Lett. 29, 947-949 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. T. Erdogan, V. Mizrahi, P. J. Lemaire, and D. Monroe, �??Decay of ultraviolet-induced fiber Bragg gratings,�?? J. Appl. Phys. 76, 73-80 (1994). [CrossRef]
  7. M. Lancry, P. Niay, S. Bailleux, M. Douay, C. Depecker, P. Cordier, and I. Riant, �??Thermal stability of the 248-nm-induced presensitization process in standard H2-loaded germanosilicate fibers,�?? Appl. Opt. 41, 7197-7204 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. S. R. Baker, H. N. Rourke, V. Baker, and D. Goodchild, �??Thermal decay of fiber Bragg gratings written in boron and germanium codoped silica fiber,�?? J. Lightwave Technol. 15, 1470-1477 (1997). [CrossRef]
  9. M. Douay, W. X. Xie, T. Taunay, P. Bernage, P. Niay, P. Cordier, B. Poumellec, L. Dong, J. F. Bayon, H. Poignant, and E. Delevaque, �??Densification involved in the UV-based photosensitivity of silica glasses and optical fibers,�?? J. Lightwave. Technol. 15, 1329-1342 (1997). [CrossRef]
  10. J. Rathje, M. Kristensen, and J. E. Pedersen, �??Continuous anneal method for characterizing the thermal stability of ultraviolet Bragg gratings,�?? J. Appl. Phys. 88, 1050-1055 (2000). [CrossRef]
  11. H. Patrick, S. L. Gilbert, A. Lidgard, and M. D. Gallagher, �??Annealing of Bragg gratings in hydrogen-loaded optical fiber,�?? J. Appl. Phys. 78, 2940-2945 (1995). [CrossRef]
  12. J. Nishii, K. Kintaka, H. Nishiyama, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, �??Thermally stabilized photoinduced Bragg gratings,�?? Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 2364-2366 (2002). [CrossRef]
  13. H. Nishiyama, K. Kintaka, J. Nishii, T. Sano, E. Ohmura, and I. Miyamoto, �??Thermo- and Photo-sensitive GeO2-B2O3-SiO2 thin glass films,�?? Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 42, 559-563 (2003). [CrossRef]
  14. H. Nishiyama, I. Miyamoto, S. Matsumoto, M. Saito, K. Fukumi, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, �??Periodic precipitation of crystalline Ge nanoparticles in Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films�??, submitted to Appl. Phys. Lett.
  15. H. Nishiyama, E. Ohmura, I. Miyamoto, K. Kintaka, and J. Nishii, �??Formation of the Bragg gratings attributed to the phase separation of Ge-B-SiO2 thin glass films�??, in Proceedings of Microoptics Conference, Paper L-12, Jena, Germany (2004).
  16. B. O. Guan, H. Y. Tam, X. M. Tao, and X. Y. Dong, �??Highly stable fiber Bragg gratings written in hydrogen-loaded fiber,�?? IEEE. Photon. Technol. Lett. 12, 1349-1351 (2000). [CrossRef]
  17. G. Brambilla, �??Enhanced thermal stability of strong gratings written in H-loaded tin-phosphosilicate optical fibers,�?? Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 4151-4153 (2002). [CrossRef]
  18. Y. Shen, T. Sun, K. T. V. Grattan, and M. Sun, �??Highly photosensitive Sb Er Ge-codoped silica fiber for writing fiber Bragg gratings with strong high-temperature sustainability,�?? Opt. Lett. 28, 2025-2027 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.


« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited