POETICS project has been conceived with the strategic objective to develop the underlying technology in Europe for the development of MCMs comprising digital switch ASICs and optical interfaces.
The objectives related to the POETICS concept and performance evaluation are mentioned below:
Objective 1│Develop high-speed InP-EML arrays supporting uncooled operation at up to 100 GBaud per lane in the O-band
Rely on EML technology for light generation and modulation in the transmitting part of the Terabit transceivers. The EMLs will be fabricated in the InP platform, having properties in terms of footprint, cost and power consumption that is closer to directly modulated lasers (DMLs), but performance that is closer to Mach-Zehnder modulators (MZMs) in terms of bandwidth and chirp.
Objective 2| Develop flip-chip compatible high-bandwidth InP phase modulators as photonic add-ons for hybrid InP-polymer IQ modulators
Develop InP phase modulator arrays as photonic add-ons on the PolyBoard, utilizing the InP waveguide stack for active and passive components. Each structure will comprise passive waveguides for the input-output sections and active waveguide for the phase section connected through a butt-joint interface. The phase modulator structure will be optimized in order to fabricate 8-fold arrays of phase modulators with high-bandwidth (>40 GHz), low driving voltage (<1.5 Vpi), low insertion loss (<1 dB) and low coupling loss (<0.6 dB per waveguide interface) with the PolyBoard waveguides.
Objective 3| Develop a cost-effective widely tunable, narrow linewidth external cavity laser based on flip-chip bonding of InP gain chips on TriPleX platform for operation in the C-band
Develop a high-performance laser source in the form of a micro ring resonator based external cavity laser (MRR-ECL), that will combine wide wavelength tunability (> 50 nm) in the C-band with narrow linewidth (<10 KHz) and high output power (50 mW).
Objective 4| Develop 2D and 3D PolyBoard motherboards to host the EML arrays and a 3D Benes optical switching circuit
Optimization of the PolyBoard’s waveguide geometry of operation in the O-band and develop a 2D PolyBoard motherboard to allow efficient low loss coupling of the EML/PD array with the PIC waveguides (< 0.6 dB) and for low loss coupling to many Single Mode Fibers (< 0.5 dB). Additionally, a unique 3D PolyBoard will be developed for not only hosting the EML/PD arrays but for providing multiplexing and demultiplexing functionality to an MCF, releasing for the first time a PIC MCF (de)multiplexer for efficient interfacing to MCFs.
Objective 5| Develop TriPleX and PolyBoard PICs and a novel InP flip-chip bonding process to TriPleX and PolyBoard for optical alignment and electrical connection in one step
Develop a novel, high-volume compatible integration method to combine the best circuits from the TriPleX and PolyBoard platforms with InP active elements, forming a set of motherboards for low-cost coherent transceivers. The TriPleX platform will integrate the tunable, narrow-linewidth laser (ECL) at the transmitter and a polarization diversity circuit comprising two optical hybrids, the ECL as local oscillator, variable optical attenuators (VOAs), and optical power splitters at the receiver. The PolyBoard will integrate an optical isolator right after the ECL’s output, and waveguides forming a dual polarization IQ modulator network, in combination with polarization rotators (PRs), phase shifters (PSs) and polarization beam combiners (PBCs) and splitters (PBSs). A flip-chip bonding process will be developed and will be used to integrate the InP gain chips at the ECLs, the balanced PD pairs after the optical hybrids and the InP phase modulator arrays in the IQ waveguide network, realizing the optical coupling and electrical connection in one step.
Objective 6| Assemble 1.6 Tb/s optical engines, co-package them with digital switch ASICs to form Multi-Chip Modules with potential for over 12.8 Tb/s switching capacity, and evaluate their performance
Develop for the first time monolithically integrated SiGe electronic circuits, that will combine in a single die, analog multiplexing and linear amplification functions, for realizing high-bandwidth transmitter and receiver electronics for 100 Gbaud operation with PAM-4 modulation format. POETICS will leverage the latest 55 nm SiGe BiCMOS architecture to realize high 3-dB bandwidth, quad linear driver arrays, quad transimpedance amplifier (TIA) arrays, and quad analog 2:1 multiplexers and de-multiplexers with embedded DSP functionalities. Moreover, high-performance PCB boards will be developed to accommodate the high-speed data generating digital chip with a large (>160) pin count and the optical engines using high-volume production compatible interfaces.
Objective 7| Leverage the disruptive potential of the hybrid integration platform: Develop 3D PICs for the interrogation and optical beam scanning unit of Laser Doppler Vibrometers
Bring together the EML technology, the multi-functional high-speed SIGe electronics and the PolyBoard motherboards, to realize novel optical engines with 1.6 Tb/s capacity that will function as the satellite chips of a Multi-Chip Module, built around a digital switch ASIC with potential for over 50 Tb/s capacity. In specific, POETICS targets to develop:
• MCM with 1.6 Tb/s OEs based on 8-fold InP-EML arrays (200 Gb/s per lane) and PolyBoard with parallel SMFs on par with the PSM/DR spec for 500 m-2 km intra-DC network connectivity.
• MCM with 1.6 Tb/s OEs based on 8-fold InP-EML arrays (200 Gb/s per lane) and 3D PolyBoard with duplex MCFs for intra-DC network and 5G optical fronthaul connectivity applications.
Objective 8| Package the 32×32 active optical switching circuit with control electronics
Utilizing a subset of the tools developed for the packaging engine of the MCM (Objective 7), and developing new where is needed, an 32×32 optical switching circuit will be packaged on a 3D PolyBoard. Furthermore, POETICS will develop methods (software) and control electronics (hardware) for the operation of the optical switch and the incorporation of the controller ICs on the interposer.
Objective 9| Assemble dual-pol 64 Gbaud coherent transceiver optical engines, co-package them in MCM compatible evaluation boards, and evaluate their performance
Develop the packaging engine for the assembly of TriPleX and PolyBoard circuits (Objective 5) and incorporate the InP-flip-chip bonding process to realize a dual-pol 64 Gbaud coherent transceiver with tunability in the C-band, narrow-linewidth and polarization diversity. The coherent transceiver optical engine will be placed on an interposer with the linear driver and TIA arrays (Objective 6). In specific, POETICS targets to develop:
• MCM Coherent 64 Gbaud OEs with up to 600 Gb/s capacity for DC interconnect applications.
Objective 10| Prepare solid roadmap and business plan for the commercialization of POETICS MCM technology after the project’s completion
Consolidate a strategy for the commercialization of the MCM transceiver and switching technology project in the post-POETICS era.