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In this paper we present a planar lightwave switching mechanism based on large refractive index variations induced by electrically-driven strain control in a CMOS-compatible photonic platform. Feasibility of the proposed concept, having general validity, is numerically analyzed in a specific case-study given by a Mach-Zehnder Interferometer with Ge waveguides topped by a piezoelectric stressor. The stressor can be operated in order to dynamically tune the strain into the two interferometric arms. The strain modifies the Ge band structure and can induce refractive index variations up to 0.05. We demonstrate that this approach can enable ultra-compact devices featuring low loss propagation for light wavelengths below the waveguide band gap energy, high extinction ratios (>30 dB) and low intrinsic insertion losses (2 dB). The operation wavelength can be extended in the whole FIR spectrum by using SiGe(Sn) alloy …
Optical Society of America
Publication date: 
9 Mar 2015

Michele Virgilio, Bernd Witzigmann, Gabriele Bolognini, Subhajit Guha, Thomas Schroeder, Giovanni Capellini

Biblio References: 
Volume: 23 Issue: 5 Pages: 5930-5940
Optics express