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Sivers, Imec and ASM Amicra Accelerate photonic Integration


Joint silicon photonics project achieves wafer-scale integration of InP DFB lasers from Sivers’ InP100 platform onto Imec’s silicon photonics platform

Sivers Semiconductors AB has announced that its subsidiary Sivers Photonics (fomerly CST Global) has reached a significant milestone with partners Imec and ASM Amicra. In their joint silicon photonics project, they have successfully managed a wafer-scale integration of InP distributed feedback (DFB) lasers from Sivers’ InP100 platform onto Imec’s silicon photonics platform (iSiPP).

This is a significant achievement since it will boost the adoption of silicon photonics in a wide range of applications from optical interconnects, over LiDAR, to biomedical sensing.

Pictured above are DFB laser dies bonded onto a 300mm silicon photonics wafer.

Many silicon photonic systems today still rely on external light sources, owing to the lack of efficient on‐chip light sources. Silicon itself does not emit light efficiently and, therefore, light sources made of III-V semiconductors, such as InP or GaAs, are typically implemented as separately packaged components. These off‐chip lasers often suffer from higher coupling losses, a large physical footprint and a high packaging cost.

Sivers Photonics, a subsidiary of Sivers Semiconductors, and Imec, a research and innovation centre in nanoelectronics and digital technologies, managed this challenge by using ASM Amicra’s latest NANO flip-chip bonder tool to efficiently enable reproduceable coupling of more than 10mW of laser power into the silicon from the DFB laser.

“We’re excited to work with Imec and ASM Amicra on the development of advanced integrated photonic components. The availability of tailored InP laser sources, designed and fabricated on our InP100 manufacturing platform, will boost the adoption of silicon photonic circuits for a wide variety of commercial applications ”, says Billy McLaughlin, Sivers Photonics managing director.

This milestone enables Sivers, Imec and ASM Amicra to extend silicon photonic prototyping with additional functionality, allowing their joint customers to develop advanced photonic integrated circuits (PICs) with capabilities beyond what is possible today. In a recent report by market research firm LightCounting, it is estimated that silicon photonic products will account for approximately half of all integrated optical devices by 2026, forecasted at $30 billion over this period. [LightCounting, May 2021 Integrated Optical Devices Report (cited in Lightwave.com)]. This widespread adoption of silicon photonic products would impact across several key application areas, such as datacom, telecom and optical sensing.

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