- 1ETH Zurich, Institute of Electromagnetic Fields (IEF), 8092 Zurich, Switzerland.
- 2University of Washington, Department of Chemistry, Seattle, WA 98195-1700, USA.
- ↵*Corresponding author. Email: (M.A.); (J.L.)
Very high volume
First products 2021
In operation for > 20 years
First products emerging
All-plasmonic Mach–Zehnder modulator enabling optical high-speed communication at the microscale
Optical modulators encode electrical signals to the optical domain and thus constitute a key element in high-capacity communication links1,2. Ideally, they should feature operation at the highest speed with the least power consumption on the smallest footprint, and at low cost3. Unfortunately, current technologies fall short of these criteria4. Recently, plasmonics has emerged as a solution offering compact and fast devices5,6,7. Yet, practical implementations have turned out to be rather elusive. Here, we introduce a 70 GHz all-plasmonic Mach–Zehnder modulator that fits into a silicon waveguide of 10 μm length. This dramatic reduction in size by more than two orders of magnitude compared with photonic Mach–Zehnder modulators results in a low energy consumption of 25 fJ per bit up to the highest speeds. The technology suggests a cheap co-integration with electronics.
Plasmonic Organic Hybrid Modulators—Scaling Highest Speed Photonics to the Microscale
High-speed plasmonic modulator in a single metal layer
Masafumi Ayata, Yuriy Fedoryshyn, Wolfgang Heni, Benedikt Baeuerle, Arne Josten, Marco Zahner, Ueli Koch, Yannick Salamin, Claudia Hoessbacher, Christian Haffner, Delwin L. Elder, Larry R. Dalton, Juerg Leuthold.