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Film-loaded SAW waveguides for integrated acousto-optical polarization converters.

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  • 1IEIIT-CNR c/o Politecnico di Torino, Torino, TO, Italy.


We report on a detailed theoretical and experimental investigation of film-loaded surface acoustic wave (SAW) waveguides in lithium niobate (LiNbO3) for integrated acousto-optical (AO) polarization converters. The numerical analysis is based on both a scalar and a full-vectorial model. Dispersion plots and figures of merit for several structures are given, which lead to design parameters for optimized polarization converters. It is pointed out that very attractive structures are metal/dielectric/LiNbO3 strip waveguides and dielectric/LiNbO3 slot waveguides, in which metal is either gold (Au) or aluminum (Al), and the dielectric film is an optical transparent material such as silicon oxide (SiO2), magnesium oxide (MgO), or aluminium oxide (Al2O3). Polarization converters with the designed acoustical waveguides have been realized and characterized by optical conversion and laser probing measurements.

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