Modulation-based control and locking of lasers, filters and other photonic components is a ubiquitous function across many applications that span the visible to infrared (IR), including atomic, molecular and optical (AMO), quantum sciences, fiber communications, metrology, and microwave photonics. Today, modulators used to realize these control functions consist of high-power bulk-optic components for tuning, sideband modulation, and phase and frequency shifting, while providing low optical insertion loss and operation from DC to 10s of MHz. In order to reduce the size, weight and cost of these applications and improve their scalability and reliability, modulation control functions need to be implemented in a low loss, wafer-scale CMOS-compatible photonic integration platform. The silicon nitride integration platform has been successful at realizing extremely low waveguide losses across the visible to infrared and components including high performance lasers, filters, resonators, stabilization cavities, and optical frequency combs. Yet, progress towards implementing low loss, low power modulators in the silicon nitride platform, while maintaining wafer-scale process compatibility has been limited. Here we report a significant advance in integration of a piezo-electric (PZT, lead zirconate titanate) actuated micro-ring modulation in a fully-planar, wafer-scale silicon nitride platform, that maintains low optical loss (0.03 dB/cm in a 625 µm resonator) at 1550 nm, with an order of magnitude increase in bandwidth (DC - 15 MHz 3-dB and DC - 25 MHz 6-dB) and order of magnitude lower power consumption of 20 nW improvement over prior PZT modulators. The modulator provides a >14 dB extinction ratio (ER) and 7.1 million quality-factor (Q) over the entire 4 GHz tuning range, a tuning efficiency of 162 MHz/V, and delivers the linearity required for control applications with 65.1 dB·Hz2/3and 73.8 dB·Hz2/3third-order intermodulation distortion (IMD3) spurious free dynamic range (SFDR) at 1 MHz and 10 MHz respectively. We demonstrate two control applications, laser stabilization in a Pound-Drever Hall (PDH) lock loop, reducing laser frequency noise by 40 dB, and as a laser carrier tracking filter. This PZT modulator design can be extended to the visible in the ultra-low loss silicon nitride platform with minor waveguide design changes. This integration of PZT modulation in the ultra-low loss silicon nitride waveguide platform enables modulator control functions in a wide range of visible to IR applications such as atomic and molecular transition locking for cooling, trapping and probing, controllable optical frequency combs, low-power external cavity tunable lasers, quantum computers, sensors and communications, atomic clocks, and tunable ultra-low linewidth lasers and ultra-low phase noise microwave synthesizers.
This content will become publicly available on April 26, 2024
Photonic molecules can realize complex optical energy modes that simulate states of matter and have application to quantum, linear, and nonlinear optical systems. To achieve their full potential, it is critical to scale the photonic molecule energy state complexity and provide flexible, controllable, stable, high-resolution energy state engineering with low power tuning mechanisms. In this work, we demonstrate a controllable, silicon nitride integrated photonic molecule, with three high-quality factor ring resonators strongly coupled to each other and individually actuated using ultralow-power thin-film lead zirconate titanate (PZT) tuning. The resulting six tunable supermodes can be fully controlled, including their degeneracy, location, and degree of splitting, and the PZT actuator design yields narrow PM energy state linewidths below 58 MHz without degradation as the resonance shifts, with over an order of magnitude improvement in resonance splitting-to-width ratio of 58, and power consumption of 90 nW per actuator, with a 1-dB photonic molecule loss. The strongly coupled PZT-controlled resonator design provides a high-degree of resolution and controllability in accessing the supermodes. Given the low loss of the silicon nitride platform from the visible to infrared and the three individual bus, six-port design, these results open the door to novel device designs and a wide range of applications including tunable lasers, high-order suppression ultranarrow-linewidth lasers, dispersion engineering, optical parametric oscillators, physics simulations, and atomic and quantum photonics.more » « less
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Publisher / Repository:
- Optical Society of America
- Date Published:
- Journal Name:
- Optics Letters
- 0146-9592; OPLEDP
- Page Range / eLocation ID:
- Article No. 2373
- Medium: X
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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Optical nanoantennas are of great importance for photonic devices and spectroscopy due to their capability of squeezing light at the nanoscale and enhancing light–matter interactions. Among them, nanoantennas made of polar crystals supporting phonon polaritons (phononic nanoantennas) exhibit the highest quality factors. This is due to the low optical losses inherent in these materials, which, however, hinder the spectral tuning of the nanoantennas due to their dielectric nature. Here, active and passive tuning of ultranarrow resonances in phononic nanoantennas is realized over a wide spectral range (≈35 cm−1, being the resonance linewidth ≈9 cm−1), monitored by near‐field nanoscopy. To do that, the local environment of a single nanoantenna made of hexagonal boron nitride is modified by placing it on different polar substrates, such as quartz and 4H‐silicon carbide, or covering it with layers of a high‐refractive‐index van der Waals crystal (WSe2). Importantly, active tuning of the nanoantenna polaritonic resonances is demonstrated by placing it on top of a gated graphene monolayer in which the Fermi energy is varied. This work presents the realization of tunable polaritonic nanoantennas with ultranarrow resonances, which can find applications in active nanooptics and (bio)sensing.
Resonant tunneling diodes (RTDs) have come full-circle in the past 10 years after their demonstration in the early 1990s as the fastest room-temperature semiconductor oscillator, displaying experimental results up to 712 GHz and fmax values exceeding 1.0 THz . Now the RTD is once again the preeminent electronic oscillator above 1.0 THz and is being implemented as a coherent source  and a self-oscillating mixer , amongst other applications. This paper concerns RTD electroluminescence – an effect that has been studied very little in the past 30+ years of RTD development, and not at room temperature. We present experiments and modeling of an n-type In0.53Ga0.47As/AlAs double-barrier RTD operating as a cross-gap light emitter at ~300K. The MBE-growth stack is shown in Fig. 1(a). A 15-μm-diam-mesa device was defined by standard planar processing including a top annular ohmic contact with a 5-μm-diam pinhole in the center to couple out enough of the internal emission for accurate free-space power measurements . The emission spectra have the behavior displayed in Fig. 1(b), parameterized by bias voltage (VB). The long wavelength emission edge is at = 1684 nm - close to the In0.53Ga0.47As bandgap energy of Ug ≈ 0.75 eV at 300 K. The spectral peaks for VB = 2.8 and 3.0 V both occur around = 1550 nm (h = 0.75 eV), so blue-shifted relative to the peak of the “ideal”, bulk InGaAs emission spectrum shown in Fig. 1(b) . These results are consistent with the model displayed in Fig. 1(c), whereby the broad emission peak is attributed to the radiative recombination between electrons accumulated on the emitter side, and holes generated on the emitter side by interband tunneling with current density Jinter. The blue-shifted main peak is attributed to the quantum-size effect on the emitter side, which creates a radiative recombination rate RN,2 comparable to the band-edge cross-gap rate RN,1. Further support for this model is provided by the shorter wavelength and weaker emission peak shown in Fig. 1(b) around = 1148 nm. Our quantum mechanical calculations attribute this to radiative recombination RR,3 in the RTD quantum well between the electron ground-state level E1,e, and the hole level E1,h. To further test the model and estimate quantum efficiencies, we conducted optical power measurements using a large-area Ge photodiode located ≈3 mm away from the RTD pinhole, and having spectral response between 800 and 1800 nm with a peak responsivity of ≈0.85 A/W at =1550 nm. Simultaneous I-V and L-V plots were obtained and are plotted in Fig. 2(a) with positive bias on the top contact (emitter on the bottom). The I-V curve displays a pronounced NDR region having a current peak-to-valley current ratio of 10.7 (typical for In0.53Ga0.47As RTDs). The external quantum efficiency (EQE) was calculated from EQE = e∙IP/(∙IE∙h) where IP is the photodiode dc current and IE the RTD current. The plot of EQE is shown in Fig. 2(b) where we see a very rapid rise with VB, but a maximum value (at VB= 3.0 V) of only ≈2×10-5. To extract the internal quantum efficiency (IQE), we use the expression EQE= c ∙i ∙r ≡ c∙IQE where ci, and r are the optical-coupling, electrical-injection, and radiative recombination efficiencies, respectively . Our separate optical calculations yield c≈3.4×10-4 (limited primarily by the small pinhole) from which we obtain the curve of IQE plotted in Fig. 2(b) (right-hand scale). The maximum value of IQE (again at VB = 3.0 V) is 6.0%. From the implicit definition of IQE in terms of i and r given above, and the fact that the recombination efficiency in In0.53Ga0.47As is likely limited by Auger scattering, this result for IQE suggests that i might be significantly high. To estimate i, we have used the experimental total current of Fig. 2(a), the Kane two-band model of interband tunneling  computed in conjunction with a solution to Poisson’s equation across the entire structure, and a rate-equation model of Auger recombination on the emitter side  assuming a free-electron density of 2×1018 cm3. We focus on the high-bias regime above VB = 2.5 V of Fig. 2(a) where most of the interband tunneling should occur in the depletion region on the collector side [Jinter,2 in Fig. 1(c)]. And because of the high-quality of the InGaAs/AlAs heterostructure (very few traps or deep levels), most of the holes should reach the emitter side by some combination of drift, diffusion, and tunneling through the valence-band double barriers (Type-I offset) between InGaAs and AlAs. The computed interband current density Jinter is shown in Fig. 3(a) along with the total current density Jtot. At the maximum Jinter (at VB=3.0 V) of 7.4×102 A/cm2, we get i = Jinter/Jtot = 0.18, which is surprisingly high considering there is no p-type doping in the device. When combined with the Auger-limited r of 0.41 and c ≈ 3.4×10-4, we find a model value of IQE = 7.4% in good agreement with experiment. This leads to the model values for EQE plotted in Fig. 2(b) - also in good agreement with experiment. Finally, we address the high Jinter and consider a possible universal nature of the light-emission mechanism. Fig. 3(b) shows the tunneling probability T according to the Kane two-band model in the three materials, In0.53Ga0.47As, GaAs, and GaN, following our observation of a similar electroluminescence mechanism in GaN/AlN RTDs (due to strong polarization field of wurtzite structures) . The expression is Tinter = (2/9)∙exp[(-2 ∙Ug 2 ∙me)/(2h∙P∙E)], where Ug is the bandgap energy, P is the valence-to-conduction-band momentum matrix element, and E is the electric field. Values for the highest calculated internal E fields for the InGaAs and GaN are also shown, indicating that Tinter in those structures approaches values of ~10-5. As shown, a GaAs RTD would require an internal field of ~6×105 V/cm, which is rarely realized in standard GaAs RTDs, perhaps explaining why there have been few if any reports of room-temperature electroluminescence in the GaAs devices.  E.R. Brown,et al., Appl. Phys. Lett., vol. 58, 2291, 1991.  S. Sze, Physics of Semiconductor Devices, 2nd Ed. 12.2.1 (Wiley, 1981).  M. Feiginov et al., Appl. Phys. Lett., 99, 233506, 2011.  L. Coldren, Diode Lasers and Photonic Integrated Circuits, (Wiley, 1995).  Y. Nishida et al., Nature Sci. Reports, 9, 18125, 2019.  E.O. Kane, J. of Appl. Phy 32, 83 (1961).  P. Fakhimi, et al., 2019 DRC Conference Digest.  T. Growden, et al., Nature Light: Science & Applications 7, 17150 (2018).  S. Sze, Physics of Semiconductor Devices, 2nd Ed. 12.2.1 (Wiley, 1981).  L. Coldren, Diode Lasers and Photonic Integrated Circuits, (Wiley, 1995).  E.O. Kane, J. of Appl. Phy 32, 83 (1961).  T. Growden, et al., Nature Light: Science & Applications 7, 17150 (2018).more » « less
Chip-scale, tunable narrow-linewidth hybrid integrated diode lasers based on quantum-dot RSOAs at 1.3 μm are demonstrated through butt-coupling to a silicon nitride photonic integrated circuit. The hybrid laser linewidth is around 85 kHz, and the tuning range is around 47 nm. Then, a fully integrated beam steerer is demonstrated by combining the tunable diode laser with a waveguide surface grating. Our system can provide beam steering of 4.1° in one direction by tuning the wavelength of the hybrid laser. Besides, a wavelength-tunable triple-band hybrid laser system working at
, , and bands is demonstrated for wide-angle beam steering in a single chip.
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