Abstract

A low-loss and broadband silicon thermo-optic switch is proposed and demonstrated experimentally by using a Mach–Zehnder Interferometer with 2×2 3 dB power splitters based on bent directional couplers (DCs). The bent DCs are introduced here to replace the traditional 2×2 3 dB power splitters based on multimode interferometers or straight DCs, so that one achieves a coupling ratio of 50%50%, as well as low excess loss over a broadband. The demonstrated Mach–Zehnder switch (MZS) has a 140  nm bandwidth for an excess loss of <1  dB and an extinction ratio of >20  dB. The present MZS also shows excellent reproducibility and good fabrication tolerance, which makes it promising for realizing N×N optical switches.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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