Abstract

Optical switches are key components in data links for optical communication networks requiring low crosstalk and insertion loss, high switching speed, and power efficiency. A multimode-interference (MMI)-coupler-based switch with multiple inputs and outputs serving as a switching unit is desired toward forming a large-scale switch matrix. Here we demonstrate a compact 3×3 MMI coupler electro-optic switch based on the carrier injection effect on InGaAsP/InP substrates. This switch device is 2780 μm long by 18 μm wide. The switching states can be controlled by two index-modulation regions through applied bias voltages. Our simulation results show that the device exhibits low crosstalk of <22  dB, high extinction ratio of 23  dB, low electrical switching energy of 2.0  pJ/bit, maximum operational frequency of 1.0  GHz, and optical bandwidth of 20  nm in the C band. We experimentally validated one of the switching states on a fabricated device with maximum current injections of 25  mA under combined bias voltages of 2.5 and 3.0  V. Such monolithic integration schemes make them an ideal candidate for future on-chip photonic integrated circuits.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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