CMOS electronics and silicon photonics integration aims at 1Tb/s

November 21, 2016 // By Julien Happich
A European Commission Horizon 2020 project, the COSMICC project launched by Leti aims to combine CMOS electronics and Si-photonics with innovative high-throughput, fiber-attachment techniques.

These scalable solutions are expected to provide performance improvement an order of magnitude better than current VCSELs transceivers, and the COSMICC-developed technology will address future data-transmission needs with a target cost per bit that traditional wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM) transceivers cannot meet.

Today, the project’s 11 partners from five countries are focusing on developing mid-board optical transceivers with data rates up to 2.4 Tb/s with 200 Gb/s per fiber using 12 fibers. The devices are expected to consume less than 2pJ/bit and cost approximately 0.2 Euros/Gb/s.

“By enhancing an R&D photonic integration platform from project member STMicroelectronics, the partners in COSMICC aim to demonstrate the transceivers by 2019,” said project leader Ségolène Olivier of Leti. “We also plan to establish a new value chain that will facilitate rapid adoption of the technologies developed by our members.”

Schematic of COSMICC on-board optical transceiver
at 2.4 Tb/s (50 Gbps/wavelength, 4 CWDM
wavelengths per fiber, 12 fibers for transmission,
12 fibers for reception.

Several technological developments will be used to boost the photonic integration platform’s high data-rate performance, while also reducing power consumption. A first improvement will be the introduction of a SiN layer that will allow development of temperature-insensitive MUX/DEMUX devices for coarse WDM operation. In addition, the SiN layer will serve as an intermediate wave-guiding layer for optical input/output to and from the photonic chip.