Mode-field matching design, 3D fabrication and characterization of down-tapers on single-mode optical fiber tips for coupling to photonic integrated circuits

Koen Vanmol, Saurav Kumar, Vivek Panapakkam, Dries Van Thourhout, Hugo Thienpont, Nathalie Vermeulen, Jan Watte, Jürgen Van Erps

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperResearch

Abstract

Photonic Integrated Circuits have made it possible to decrease the footprint of traditionally bulky optical systems and they create opportunities for various new and fascinating applications. One of the limiting factors for the widespread adaption of PICs is their connection to the outside world. As the mode field diameter of optical modes in waveguides tends to be an order of magnitude smaller than in their fiber counterparts, creating an efficient, robust and alignmenttolerant fiber-to-chip interface remains a challenge.

In this work, we investigate the optimization of the fiber-side of the optical interface, whereas the chip itself remains untouched and makes use of spot-size convertors. Optical fiber tips can be functionalized using two-photon polymerization-based 3D nanoprinting technology, which offers full 3D design freedom and sub-micrometer resolution. We present a down-taper design strategy to match the mode-field diameter of single-mode optical fibers to the modefield diameter of waveguides with spot-size converters on PICs.

The 3D printed down-tapers are characterized towards their geometry and mode shape, and we experimentally demonstrate their use for coupling towards a Silicon-On-Insulator chip with spot-size convertors. Furthermore, the performance of these down-tapered fibers is compared to conventional lensed fibers in terms of optical coupling efficiency.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationConference on 3D Printed Optics and Additive Photonic Manufacturing II
PublisherSPIE
Pages1-7
Number of pages7
Volume11349
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5106-3471-8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventConference on 3D Printed Optics and Additive Photonic Manufacturing II - ELECTR. NETWORK
Duration: 6 Apr 202010 Apr 2020

Conference

ConferenceConference on 3D Printed Optics and Additive Photonic Manufacturing II
Period6/04/2010/04/20

Keywords

  • 3D direct laser writing; fiber-to-chip coupling; fiber taper; mode-matching; optical interconnects; photonic; integrated circuits; two-photon polymerization

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