Imec demonstrates 25Gb/s silicon photonics devices on single platform

Achievements extend imec's silicon photonics technology offering to high performance photonics circuit design

(PresseBox) ( Leuven, Belgium, )
Imec today announced the release of its fully integrated silicon photonics platform (iSiPP25G) for high-performance optical transceivers (25Gb/s and beyond). Imec's portfolio includes low loss (2.5dB/cm) strip waveguides, highly efficient grating couplers (2.5dB insertion loss), high-speed (50GHz) Germanium waveguide photodiodes, 25Gb/s Mach-Zhender and Micro-ring modulators.

"Imec's Silicon Photonics platform provides 25Gb/s performance for integrated photonics circuits for telecom and datacom industries. Companies can benefit from our silicon photonics capability through established standard cells, or explore the functionality of their own designs in Multi-Project Wafer (MPW) runs," stated Philippe Absil, program director at imec. "Through our MPW offer, fabless R&D teams can access a cost-efficient silicon photonics solution, with state-of-the-art performance, design flexibility and superior CD and thickness control".

Imec and its associated laboratory at Ghent University offer the platform for passive silicon photonic components via ePIXfab and Europractice IC service. Now, imec extends its silicon photonics offering, using a standard130nm CMOS toolset, with active components such as high-speed optical modulators and integrated germanium photo-detectors.

Imec's silicon photonics 25Gb/s (iSiPP25G) platform supports
- Tight within-wafer silicon thickness variation 3 < 2.5nm
- 3-level patterning of 220nm top Si layer (193nm optical lithography)
- Low loss (2.5dB/cm) strip waveguides
- High efficiency grating couplers (2.5dB insertion loss)
- 50GHz Ge photodiode (responsivity ~ 0.5A/W, dark current < 50nA)
- 25Gb/s MZI (VL=0.95Vcm, =30dB/cm) and MRR modulators
- Thermo-optic tuner

The first run is now open for registration, with tape-in on 8th of November 2013 and first wafers out in June 2014. Support, registration and design kit access will be organized by imec's services via its Europractice IC service, in collaboration with world-wide MPW partners.

About ePIXfab

ePIXfab is the European Silicon Photonics Platform co-funded by the EU. ePIXfab is a consortium of partners coordinated by imec-UGent partnership. Other members of the consortium are CEA-LETI (France), IHP (Germany) TNO (Netherlands), Tyndall (Ireland), VTT (Finland) and CMC Microsystems (Canada); providing together diverse expertise from design to packaging thus supporting the emergence of a fabless ecosystem in Silicon Photonics. For more information, visit

About Ghent University and Intec

Ghent University, abbreviated to UGent, is one of the major universities in the Dutch-speaking region of Europe. It distinguishes itself as a socially committed and pluralistic university in a broad international perspective.
The mission of the Department of Information Technology (Intec) of Ghent University is to provide high quality education from ungraduate to postgraduate level based on excellent research. To obtain this excellence on an international level Intec focuses its research effort on carefully chosen domains so as to achieve a critical density in each of them. In the physical layer Intec has a strong focus on nanophotonic components and more particularly silicon photonics.

Imec is a registered trademark for the activities of IMEC International (a legal entity set up under Belgian law as a "stichting van openbaar nut"), imec Belgium (IMEC vzw supported by the Flemish Government), imec the Netherlands (Stichting IMEC Nederland, part of Holst Centre which is supported by the Dutch Government), imec Taiwan (IMEC Taiwan Co.) and imec China (IMEC Microelectronics (Shangai) Co. Ltd.) and imec India (Imec India Private Limited).
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