December 3, 2004 Ipswich UK -- The Centre for Integrated Photonics (CIP) has launched a range of electro-absorption modulators (EAMs) fabricated using indium phosphide (InP). Available in 40-Gbit/sec and 10-Gbit/sec versions for either single wavelength or DWDM communications applications, the devices offer low insertion loss, small size, high bandwidth, and low drive voltages.
CIP's III-V semiconductor design and manufacturing services can also be used to produce variants of the device with application-specific characteristics to suit emerging system architecture requirements such as return-to-zero (RZ) data modulation and optical time division multiplexing (OTDM).
A key feature of CIP's EAM design is low insertion loss. Figures of 4.5 dB or 4 dB typical for the 40-Gbit/sec and 10-Gbit/sec variants, respectively, provide good power margins for system design. This feature stems from novel structures employed in the devices, including a buried heterostructure geometry.
The 40-Gbit/sec version of the device -- the 40G-SR-EAM -- offers a bandwidth of 32 GHz typical and a drive voltage of 2.9 V. These performance parameters compare well to those that can typically be achieved using modulators fabricated from lithium-niobate material, but result in a dramatically smaller footprint, CIP asserts. The low-chirp device is very small, and is offered in a compact package with a K connector, or in chip-on-carrier form. Variants of 40G-SR-EAM are available for use in either the 1550nm or 1300nm wavelength bands.
The 10Gbit/s version of the device - 10G-LR-EAM - offers a bandwidth of 10GHz minimum, and a drive voltage of 2.9V. This InP device is also offered in a compact package with a K connector, or in chip-on-carrier form. It is suitable for 1550nm wavelength band applications transmitting over uncompensated links up to 100km.
The new EAMs join a range of compound-semiconductor device functions for optical networking developed over many years by CIP. CIP previously was part of Corning, and before that British Telecom's Photonic Technology Research Centre. The organization has its own semiconductor fabrication plant and is able to create variants of the EAM devices with application-specific performance requirements. Hybrid integration capabilities enable the EAM to be integrated with additional optoelectronic elements such as lasers and amplifiers.