Silicon photonics start-up Skorpios Technologies is getting close to delivering its first product: a full C-band tunable laser manufactured in a commercial semiconductor foundry.
The new device is based on the Skorpios Template Assisted Bonding (STAB) process, which involves bonding a III-V crystalline layer to a CMOS wafer. The laser is fabricated in the II-V layer while the other photonic elements are created in the silicon, with the aim of combining the best of both materials systems. The III-V layer is completely encapsulated within the silicon, which eliminates the need for special packaging, the company says.
Skorpios says the performance of the initial devices is suitable for applications ranging from data centre interconnection to high-performance coherent long-haul systems supporting data rates in excess of 100Gbps. The performance benefits of the laser include narrow linewidth, high side-mode suppression, wide tuning range and no requirement for active cooling or hermetic packaging, the company says.
“This represents a key missing piece of the silicon photonics puzzle, moving the laser in-chip and delivering a truly single-chip solution,” said Stephen Krasulick, founder and CEO of Skorpios.
Skorpios’ goal is to create a volume manufacturing process to deliver highly integrated photonic components at very low cost. Details on other products will be revealed in due course. The company plans to create a library of function-based optical “macrocells”, similar to the libraries of the digital electronics world, which can be combined to create both custom and standard products.
Skorpios says the first products are being developed for some of its initial investors, which include systems vendors Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks, as well T-Venture, the venture capital arm of operator Deutsche Telekom. Venture capital funds Cottonwood Technology Fund and Sun Mountain Capital have also invested in the firm.
By Pauline Rigby
Lightwave: Skorpios demos CMOS tunable laser, nears production
Press release: Skorpios Technologies Demonstrates CMOS Tunable Laser