Optical isolators and circulators are fundamental building block in photonic integrated circuits to block undesired reflections and routing light according to a prescribed direction. In silicon photonics, heterogeneous integration of magneto-optic garnet bonded on a pre-patterned silicon layer has been demonstrated to be an effective solution for manufacturing optical isolators and circulators for TM polarized light. However, most integrated semiconductor lasers emit TE polarized light, which indicates the need to find a reliable solution for this polarization. In this paper, we demonstrated broadband optical isolators and circulators for TE polarized light based on heterogeneous bonding on the silicon photonics platform. To achieve this goal, an integrated adiabatic coupler and a broadband polarization rotator are designed and optimized. The nonreciprocal behavior is induced through an energy-efficient integrated electromagnet with a minimum power consumption of 3 mW. Two isolators/circulators are fabricated with small and large free spectral range, respectively. In the former case, an optical isolation ratio as large as 30 dB is measured at 1555 nm with an insertion loss of 18 dB, while for the broadband circulator, an optical isolation larger than 15 dB is guaranteed over more than 14 nm (1.75 THz) for all port combinations with an insertion loss between 14 and 18 dB at 1560 nm. Finally, it has been theoretically shown that the insertion loss can be reduced below 6 dB with design and fabrication improvements. To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the proposed integrated TE optical circulator is the first experimental demonstration of this device in silicon photonics.
Journal of Lightwave Technology
Volume 37, Issue 5
More Research Areas
Isolators & Circulators