Interposers For Integrated Microcomb-Based Systems

The convergence of nanophotonic resonators and scalable integrated photonics can benefit integrated microcomb-based systems. Optical frequency synthesis, optical atomic clocks, optical distance ranging, optical spectroscopy, microwave, radiofrequency photonics, astronomy, and telecommunications are all applications for these systems. These systems require integrated photonic interposers.

Photonic interposers are required to realize the cost, size, weight, power, performance, and scalability benefits offered by microcombs and integrated photonics. These interposers must incorporate multiple broadband high-performance photonic elements into a low-loss and high-damage-threshold photonics platform.

Researchers have developed a new integrated photonics interposers architecture for a microcomb-based optical frequency synthesizer. Broadband light from discrete chiplets and heterogeneously integrated photonic devices are collected, routed, and interfaced. Short-loop tests show that the performance of the proposed interposer’s constituent passive elements (octave-wide dichroic couplers, resonant filters, and multimode interferometers) agrees with their electromagnetic simulations.

Researchers demonstrate that through octave-bandwidth adiabatic evanescent coupling, the thick silicon nitride required for bright dissipative Kerr soliton generation can be integrated with the comparatively thin silicon nitride interposer layer, indicating a path toward future system-level consolidation. They have numerically confirmed that the proposed interposer synthesizer can be operated as a fully assembled system. The interposer architecture addresses the immediate need for on-chip microcomb processing to miniaturize microcomb systems successfully and is easily adaptable to other metrology-grade applications based on optical atomic clocks, high-precision navigation, and spectroscopy.

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