The paper presents a special class of optical devices, SOEs, which have feature size smaller than the wavelength of light and hence no non-zero order diffraction. SOEs drastically differ from bulk optics (i.e. ray optics) and diffractive optics in a number ways. First, SOEs can perform conventional bulk optics’ functions, but with a size orders of magnitude smaller than bulk optics. Second, different SOEs (hence different functions) can be made using the same materials but different nano-patterns, rather than different materials in bulk optics. The two advantages make SOEs intrinsically suited for integration on a chip. The third advantage, SOEs can offer new functionalities that bulk or diffractive optics do not have.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

PDF Article
More Like This
A path to integrate optical communication components on a chip

Stephen Y. Chou
JWC6 Integrated Photonics Research (IPR) 2003