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Opt Express. 2005 Mar 7;13(5):1515-30.

Beyond the Rayleigh scattering limit in high-Q silicon microdisks: theory and experiment.


Using a combination of resist reflow to form a highly circular etch mask pattern and a low-damage plasma dry etch, high-quality-factor silicon optical microdisk resonators are fabricated out of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers. Quality factors as high as Q = 5x10(6) are measured in these microresonators, corresponding to a propagation loss coefficient as small as alpha ~ 0.1 dB/cm. The different optical loss mechanisms are identified through a study of the total optical loss, mode coupling, and thermally-induced optical bistability as a function of microdisk radius (5-30 microm). These measurements indicate that optical loss in these high-Q microresonators is limited not by surface roughness, but rather by surface state absorption and bulk free-carrier absorption.

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