Tuning and reconfiguring of nanophotonic components are needed to realize systems incorporating many components. The electrostatic force can deform a structure and tune its optical response. Despite the success of electrostatic actuators, they suffer from trade-offs between tuning voltage, tuning range, and on-chip area. Piezoelectric actuation could resolve these challenges, but only pm-per-volt scale wavelength tunability has been achieved. Here we propose and demonstrate compact piezoelectric actuators, called nanobenders, that transduce tens of nanometers per volt. By leveraging the non-uniform electric field from submicron electrodes, we generate bending of a piezoelectric nanobeam. Combined with a sliced photonic crystal cavity to sense displacement, we show tuning of an optical resonance by ~ 5 nm V−1 (0.6 THz V−1) and between 1520 ~ 1560 nm (~ 400 linewidths) within 4 V. Finally, we consider tunable nanophotonic components enabled by the nanobenders.
- Award ID(s):
- Publication Date:
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Journal Name:
- Nano letters
- Page Range or eLocation-ID:
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
More Like this
Nanobenders as efficient piezoelectric actuators for widely tunable nanophotonics at CMOS-level voltages
There are a range of fundamental challenges associated with scaling optoelectronic devices down to the nano-scale, and the past decades have seen significant research dedicated to the development of sub-diffraction-limit optical devices, often relying on the plasmonic response of metal structures. At the longer wavelengths associated with the mid-infrared, dramatic changes in the optical response of traditional nanophotonic materials, reduced efficiency optoelectronic active regions, and a host of deleterious and/or parasitic effects makes nano-scale optoelectronics at micro-scale wavelengths particularly challenging. In this Perspective, we describe recent work leveraging a class of infrared plasmonic materials, highly doped semiconductors, which not only support sub-diffraction-limit plasmonic modes at long wavelengths, but which can also be integrated into a range of optoelectronic device architectures. We discuss how the wavelength-dependent optical response of these materials can serve a number of different photonic device designs, including dielectric waveguides, epsilon-near-zero dynamic optical devices, cavity-based optoelectronics, and plasmonic device architectures. We present recent results demonstrating that the highly doped semiconductor class of materials offers the opportunity for monolithic, all-epitaxial, device architectures out-performing current state of the art commercial devices, and discuss the perspectives and promise of these materials for infrared nanophotonic optoelectronics.
Advances in ultrafast laser technology and nanofabrication have enabled a new class of particle accelerator based upon miniaturized laser-driven photonic structures. However, developing a useful accelerator based on this approach requires control of the particle dynamics at field intensities approaching the damage limit. We measure acceleration in a fused silica dielectric laser accelerator driven by fields of up to 9 GV m−1and observe a record 1.8 GV m−1in the accelerating mode. At these intensities the dielectric is driven beyond its linear response and self-phase modulation changes the phase velocity of the accelerating mode, reducing the average gradient to 850 MeV m−1. We show that free-space optics can be used to compensate this dephasing and demonstrate that tailoring the laser phase and amplitude can facilitate optimization of the beam dynamics. This could enable MeV scale energy gain in a single stage and pave the way towards applications in scientific, industrial, and medical fields.
Photonic Network-on-Chips (PNoCs) offer promising benefits over Electrical Network-on-Chips (ENoCs) in many-core systems owing to their lower latencies, higher bandwidth, and lower energy-per-bit communication with negligible data-dependent power. These benefits, however, are limited by a number of challenges. Microring resonators (MRRs) that are used for photonic communication have high sensitivity to process variations and on-chip thermal variations, giving rise to possible resonant wavelength mismatches. State-of-the-art microheaters, which are used to tune the resonant wavelength of MRRs, have poor efficiency resulting in high thermal tuning power. In addition, laser power and high static power consumption of drivers, serializers, comparators, and arbitration logic partially negate the benefits of the sub-pJ operating regime that can be obtained with PNoCs. To reduce PNoC power consumption, this paper introduces WAVES, a wavelength selection technique to identify and activate the minimum number of laser wavelengths needed, depending on an application's bandwidth requirement. Our results on a simulated 2.5D manycore system with PNoC demonstrate an average of 23% (resp. 38%) reduction in PNoC power with only <;1% (resp. <;5%) loss in system performance.
Analog photonic solutions offer unique opportunities to address complex computational tasks with unprecedented performance in terms of energy dissipation and speeds, overcoming current limitations of modern computing architectures based on electron flows and digital approaches. The lack of modularization and lumped element reconfigurability in photonics has prevented the transition to an all-optical analog computing platform. Here, we explore, using numerical simulation, a nanophotonic platform based on epsilon-near-zero materials capable of solving in the analog domain partial differential equations (PDE). Wavelength stretching in zero-index media enables highly nonlocal interactions within the board based on the conduction of electric displacement, which can be monitored to extract the solution of a broad class of PDE problems. By exploiting the experimentally achieved control of deposition technique through process parameters, used in our simulations, we demonstrate the possibility of implementing the proposed nano-optic processor using CMOS-compatible indium-tin-oxide, whose optical properties can be tuned by carrier injection to obtain programmability at high speeds and low energy requirements. Our nano-optical analog processor can be integrated at chip-scale, processing arbitrary inputs at the speed of light.