Abstract

A graded-index multilayer thin-film stack is optimized to act as a cladding layer on top of a silicon (Si) nanowaveguide and also a collimator for chip coupling where the waveguide ends. The numerical example shows an optimized graded-index profile from 2.35 to 1.45 provides an optical coupling to the standard single-mode fiber with efficiency close to 90% while retaining tight light confinement for the Si nanowaveguide. The corresponding material realization of a graded-index profile with a Si-rich nitride SiNx/SiON/SiO2 system is explored using inductively coupled plasma chemical vapor deposition, and a SiNx cladded Si waveguide is demonstrated.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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