Abstract

We demonstrate a novel bistable optical waveguide switch, which may be suitable for incorporation in large-dimension optical cross connects. The switching is based on the electrolytic creation and catalytic destruction of bubbles and is both wavelength and polarization independent. Calculations indicate that low losses and cross talk, which are crucial for large switching arrays, can be achieved with the combination of materials used in the prototype. The intrinsic bistability of the switch eliminates the need for a holding voltage and permits matrix addressing.

© 1990 Optical Society of America

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  1. Fabricated by Photonic Integration Research, Inc., Columbus, Ohio.
  2. A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
    [CrossRef]
  3. A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
    [CrossRef]

1988 (1)

A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
[CrossRef]

1985 (1)

A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
[CrossRef]

Himeno, A.

A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
[CrossRef]

A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
[CrossRef]

Kobayashi, M.

A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
[CrossRef]

A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
[CrossRef]

Terui, H.

A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
[CrossRef]

A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
[CrossRef]

Electron. Lett. (1)

A. Himeno, M. Kobayashi, H. Terui, Electron. Lett. 21, 1020 (1985).
[CrossRef]

IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. (1)

A. Himeno, H. Terui, M. Kobayashi, IEEE J. Lightwave Technol. 6, 41 (1988).
[CrossRef]

Other (1)

Fabricated by Photonic Integration Research, Inc., Columbus, Ohio.

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Figures (5)

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

Bubble switch: (a) transmitting state, with fluid in the slot; (b) reflecting state, with bubble displacing the fluid.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Test cell for demonstration of bistable switching. (a) Top view; the slot is sawed at 45° to the direction of light propagation, and electrodes are evaporated onto the surface. (b) Cross section; the cover glass contains water in the slot, and electrodes make contact over only a small area. The overall dimensions are 1 cm × 1 cm, with a 150-μm-wide and 200-μm-deep slot.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

Results of the switching measurement, (a) With a pulse large enough to create merged bubbles, the transmission is turned off and then rapidly (~1.5 sec) recovers, (b) The off pulse follows the on pulse by several seconds; the transmitted light is blocked until it reaches the off pulse, after which it recovers rapidly. (c) With a single switching pulse, the transmitted light is turned off indefinitely.

Fig. 4
Fig. 4

Possible optical matrix switch.

Fig. 5
Fig. 5

Calculated cross talk due to index mismatch, assuming a guide index of 1.45. The solid curves are TE polarization, and the dotted curves are TM polarization.

Equations (2)

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2 H 2 O O 2 ( gas ) + 4 H + ( aq ) + 4 e ,
4 H + ( aq ) + 4 e 2 H 2 ( gas ) ,

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