<p><a href="http://www.osa-jon.org/virtual_issue.cfm?vid=28">Feature Issue on Nanoscale Integrated Photonics for Optical Networks</a></p>The goal of the research program that we describe is to break the emerging performance wall in microprocessor development arising from limited bandwidth and density of on-chip interconnects and chip-to-chip (processor-to-memory) electrical interfaces. Complementary metal-oxide semiconductor compatible photonic devices provide an infrastructure for deployment of a range of integrated photonic networks, which will replace state-of-the-art electrical interconnects, providing significant gains at the system level. Scaling of wavelength-division-multiplexing (WDM) architectures using high-index-contrast (HIC) waveguides offers one path to realizing the energy efficiency and density requirements of high data rate links. HIC microring-resonator filters are well suited to support add-drop nodes in dense WDM photonic networks with high aggregate data rates because they support high Q's and, due to their traveling-wave character, naturally support physically separated input and drop ports. A novel reconfigurable, 'hitless' switch is presented that does not perturb the express channels either before, during, or after reconfiguration. In addition, multigigahertz operation of low-power, Mach-Zehnder silicon modulators as well as germanium-on-silicon photodiodes are presented.
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