A European project aims to bring together photonic technologies for performance above 100GHz for quantum and satellite applications.
The PATTERN project will devise the world’s first Process Design Kit (PDK) and Assembly Design Kit (ADK) for microwave photonics at frequencies above 100 GHz, new methods for heterogenous integration of III-V materials such as InP and Silicon Germanium (SiGe) as well as BiCMOS drivers with electro-optic and nonlinear platform of a thin-film lithium-niobate-on-insulator (LNOI).
It will also develop new functionalities in PICs such as acousto-optic modulation (AOMs) and optical isolation capabilities that will be available through an open access foundry.
The four year project, called Photonic integrATed circuiTs using advancEd hybRid iNtegration (PATTERN), will develop several demonstrators, from quantum to satellite free-space communications to ultrastable optical-based RF-sources.
It brings together Thales, Luceda Photonics in Belgium and PHIX in The Netherlands as well as CSEM in Switzerland and University College London in the UK. It also includes the Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz-Institut and Microwave Photon in Germany as well as the Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre in Belgium and CNRS and L-UP in France.
The integration of InP and LNOI platforms will use methods such as butt-coupling, flip-chip bonding and micro-transfer printing, as well as new materials such as yttrium iron garnet (YIG) to add magneto-optic functionalities to PICs.
It will also look at high frequency packaging technologies which are currently one of the main bottlenecks in this field and develop software expertise for design automation (e.g. RF signal routing) and end-to-end circuit simulation and design, which is extremely challenging at ultra-high frequencies.
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