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Opt Express. 2007 Apr 30;15(9):5851-9.

Optical modulator on silicon employing germanium quantum wells.


We demonstrate an electroabsorption modulator on a silicon substrate based on the quantum confined Stark effect in strained germanium quantum wells with silicon-germanium barriers. The peak contrast ratio is 7.3 dB at 1457 nm for a 10 V swing, and exceeds 3 dB from 1441 nm to 1461 nm. The novel side-entry structure employs an asymmetric Fabry-Perot resonator at oblique incidence. Unlike waveguide modulators, the design is insensitive to positional misalignment, maintaining > 3 dB contrast while translating the incident beam 87 mum and 460 mum in orthogonal directions. Since the optical ports are on the substrate edges, the wafer top and bottom are left free for electrical interconnections and thermal management.

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