EuroPIC Project Aims To Facilitate Access By Small Companies To Cost-effective
EuroPIC is a collaborative project which has brought together a consortium of experts including Europe’s key players, consisting of a mix of SMEs, industry and academic partners, in the fields of component manufacturing, PIC design and applications, photonic CAD, and packaging. It has received €3.75 million funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (Directorate General for Research, Directorate Industrial Technologies—G2: New Generation Products) to effect a fundamental change in the way applications based on photonic integrated circuits are designed and manufactured in Europe.
The key development is to facilitate access by small companies (SMEs) to development and manufacturing of photonic micro-systems in the form of advanced but very cost effective PICs. EuroPIC will bring forth a new production paradigm to forge a sustainable business sector with the potential for very significant future growth.
This will be done by developing a generic technology that is capable of realizing complex PICs from a small set of basic building blocks. The programme adopts a holistic approach addressing the whole production chain from idea, via proof of concept, design and prototype to product and application. The consortium will carry out research into manufacturing methods and high-throughput processes which will lead to an open-access industrial generic foundry production capability for Europe. It will demonstrate the potential of the generic approach by fabricating a number of Application Specific PICs (ASPICs) with a record combination of complexity and performance, for a wide range of applications in telecommunications, sensors, data communications, medical systems, metrology and consumer photonics. The consortium is in an excellent position to carry out this ambitious task.
Further, EuroPIC is building a strong User Group, many of them SMEs, with committed users from different application fields, which will be actively involved in introducing cost-effective ASPICs in a variety of novel applications, providing Europe with a competitive advantage over the US and the Far East.
Partners in the EuroPIC consortium are:
Project Coordinator: COBRA, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven (TU/e), Netherlands
Willow Photonics Ltd, UK
Oclaro Technology, plc., UK
PhoeniX Software, Netherlands
CIP Technologies, UK
BB Photonics, Netherlands
Alcatel-Thales III-V Lab, France
Photon Design Ltd, UK
University of Cambridge, UK
Baas B.V., Netherlands
Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich Hertz Institute, Germany
MiPlaza, Philips Research, Netherlands