<p><a href="http://www.osa-jon.org/virtual_issue.cfm?vid=28">Feature Issue on Nanoscale Integrated Photonics for Optical Networks</a></p>Fiber optic communication is well established today in long-haul, metro, and some data communication segments. Optical technologies continue to penetrate more into the network owing to the increase in bandwidth demands; however, they still suffer from too expensive solutions. Silicon photonics is a new technology developing integrated photonic devices and circuits based on the unique silicon material that has already revolutionized the face of our planet through the microelectronics industry. This paper reviews silicon photonics technology at Intel, showing how using the same mature, low-cost silicon CMOS technology we develop many of the building blocks required in current and future optical networks. After introducing the silicon photonics motivation for networks, we discuss the various devices--waveguides, modulators, Raman amplifiers and lasers, photodetectors, optical interconnects, and photonic crystals--from the points of view of applications, principle of operation, process development, and performance results.
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