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Rare-earth-ion-doped waveguide lasers on a silicon chip
KTH, School of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Materials- and Nano Physics.
2015 (English)In: Optical Components and Materials XII, SPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering, 2015, Vol. 9359, 935910- p., 935910Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Rare-earth-ion-doped materials are of high interest as amplifiers and lasers in integrated optics. Their longer excited-state lifetimes and the weaker refractive-index change accompanied with rare-earth-ion excitation compared to electron-hole pairs in III-V semiconductors provide spatially and temporally stable optical gain, allowing for high-speed amplification and narrow-linewidth lasers. Amorphous Al2O3 deposited onto thermally oxidized silicon wafers offers the advantage of integration with silicon photonics and electronics. Layer deposition by RF reactive co-sputtering and micro-structuring by chlorine-based reactive-ion etching provide low-loss channel waveguides. With erbium doping, we improved the gain to 2 dB/cm at 1533 nm and a gain bandwidth of 80 nm. The gain is limited by migration-accelerated energy-transfer upconversion and a fast quenching process. Since stimulated emission is even faster than this quenching process, lasers are only affected in terms of their threshold, allowing us to demonstrate diode-pumped micro-ring, distributed-feedback (DFB), and distributed-Bragg-reflector (DBR) lasers in Al2O3: Er3+ and Al2O3:Yb3+ on a silicon chip. Surface-relief Bragg gratings were patterned by laser-interference lithography. Monolithic DFB and DBR cavities with Q-factors of 1.35x10(6) were realized. In an Er-doped DFB laser, single-longitudinal-mode operation at 1545 nm was achieved with a linewidth of 1.7 kHz, corresponding to a laser Q-factor of 1.14x1011. Yb-doped DFB and DBR lasers were demonstrated at 1020 nm with output powers of 55 mW and a slope efficiency of 67% versus launched pump power. A dual-phase-shift, dual-wavelength laser was achieved and a stable microwave signal at similar to 15 GHz was created via the heterodyne photo-detection of the two laser wavelengths.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
SPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering, 2015. Vol. 9359, 935910- p., 935910
, Proceedings of SPIE, ISSN 0277-786X ; 9359
Keyword [en]
erbium, ytterbium, neodymium, amorphous aluminum oxide, energy-transfer upconversion, optical gain, micro-ring laser, distributed-feedback laser
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Other Physics Topics
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-169159DOI: 10.1117/12.2077474ISI: 000354268500020ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84931336850ISBN: 978-1-62841-449-3OAI: diva2:820477
Optical Components and Materials XII, San Francisco, United States, 9 February 2015 through 11 February 2015

QC 20150612

Available from: 2015-06-12 Created: 2015-06-11 Last updated: 2015-07-02Bibliographically approved

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Pollnau, Markus
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