Demand for more transmission capacity in data centres is increasing due to the continuous growth of Internet traffic. The introduction of external modulators into datacom networks is essential with advanced modulation formats. However, the large footprint of silicon photonics Mach–Zehnder (MZ) modulators will limit further increases in transmission capacity1,2,3,4. To overcome this, we introduce III–V compound semiconductors because the large electron-induced refractive-index change, high electron mobility and low carrier-plasma absorption are beneficial for overcoming the trade-offs among the voltage–length product (VπL), operation speed and insertion loss of Si MZ modulators. Here, we demonstrate an MZ modulator with a 250-µm-long InGaAsP/Si metal-oxide–semiconductor (MOS) capacitor phase-shifter and obtain a VπL of 0.09 Vcm in accumulation mode, an insertion loss of ∼1.0 dB, a cutoff frequency of ∼2.2 GHz in depletion mode and a 32-Gbit s–1 modulation with signal pre-emphasis. These results are promising for fabricating high-capacity large-scale photonic integrated circuits with low power consumption.
Your institute does not have access to this article
Open Access articles citing this article.
Nature Communications Open Access 27 August 2018
Subscribe to Nature+
Get immediate online access to the entire Nature family of 50+ journals
Subscribe to Journal
Get full journal access for 1 year
only $8.25 per issue
All prices are NET prices.
VAT will be added later in the checkout.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.
All prices are NET prices.
Marris-Morini, D. et al. High speed all-silicon optical modulator. J. Lumines. 121, 387–390 (2006).
Feng, N. N. et al. High speed carrier-depletion modulators with 1.4 V-cm VπL integrated on 0.25 µm silicon-on-insulator waveguides. Opt. Express 18, 7994–7999 (2010).
Thomson, D. J. et al. 50-Gb/s silicon optical modulator. IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett. 24, 234–236 (2012).
Gardes, F. Y. 40 Gb/s silicon photonics modulator for TE and TM polarizations. Opt. Express 19, 11804–11814 (2011).
Soref, R. A. & Bennett, B. R. Kramers–Krong analysis of electrooptical switching in silicon. SPIE Proc. 704, 32–37 (1987).
Thomson, D. et al. Total internal reflection optical switches to restrict carrier diffusion in the guiding layer. J. Lightwave Technol. 26, 1288–1294 (2008).
Green, W. M. J., Rooks, M. J., Sekaric, L. & Vlasov, Y. A. Ultra-compact, low RF power, 10 Gb/s silicon Mach-Zehnder modulator. Opt. Express 15, 17106–17113 (2007).
Xu, Q., Manipatruni, S., Schmidt, B., Shakya, J. & Lipson, M. 12.5 Gbit/s carrier-injection-based silicon microring silicon modulator. Opt. Express 15, 430–436 (2007).
Preston, K., Manipatruni, S., Gondarenko, A., Poitras, C. B. & Lipson, M. Deposited silicon high-speed integrated electro-optic modulator. Opt. Express 17, 5118–5124 (2009).
Liu, A. et al. A high-speed silicon optical modulator based on a metal–oxide–semiconductor capacitor. Nature 427, 615–618 (2004).
Liao, L. et al. High speed silicon Mach-Zehnder modulator. Opt. Express 13, 3129–3135 (2005).
Webster, M. et al. Low-power MOS-capacitor based silicon photonic modulators and CMOS drivers. In Proc. Optical Fiber Commun. Conf. Exhibition W4H.3 (2015).
Bennett, B. R., Soref, R. A. & Del Alamo, J. A. Carrier-induced change in refractive index of InP, GaAs, and InGaAsP. J. Quantum Elecron. 26, 113–122 (1990).
Chusseau, L. et al. Carrier-induced change due to doping in refractive index of InP: measurements at 1.3 and 1.5 µm. Appl. Phys. Lett. 69, 3054–3056 (1996).
Botteldooren, D. & Baets, R. Influence of band-gap shrinkage on the carrier-induced refractive index change in InGaAsP. Appl. Phys. Lett. 54, 1989–1991 (1989).
Hilsum, C. Simple empirical relationship between mobility and carrier concentration. Electon. Lett. 10, 259–260 (1974).
Tappura, K. Electrical and optical properties of GaInAsP grown by gas-source molecular beam epitaxy. J. Appl. Phys. 74, 4565–4570 (1993).
Chen, H.-W., Kuo, Y.-H. & Bowers, J. E. A hybrid silicon–AlGaInAs phase modulator. IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett. 20, 1920–1922 (2008).
Chen, H.-W., Kuo, Y.-H. & Bowers, J. E. High speed hybrid silicon evanescent Mach-Zehnder modulator and switch. Opt. Express 16, 20571–20576 (2008).
Liang, D. et al. A tunable hybrid III-V-on-Si MOS microring resonator with negligible tuning power consumption. In Proc. Optical Fiber Commun. Conf. Exhibition Th1K.4 (2016).
Liang, D., Huang, X., Kurczveil, G., Fiorentino, M. & Beausoleil, R. G. Integrated finely tunable microring laser on silicon. Nat. Photon. 10, 719–722 (2016).
Soref, R. A. & Bennett, B. R. Electrooptical effects in silicon. J. Quantum Electron. 23, 123–129 (1987).
Adachi, S. Physical Properties of III-V Semiconductor Compounds (Wiley-Interscience, 1992).
Murphy, E. J. et al. Integrated Optical Circuits and Components: Design and Applications (CRC Press, 1999).
Han, J.-H., Takenaka, M. & Takagi, S. Extremely high modulation efficiency III-V/Si hybrid MOS optical modulator fabricated by direct wafer bonding. In Proc. Int. Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) 25.5.1–25.5.4 (2016).
Shimura, D. et al. High precision Si waveguide devices designed for 1.31 µm and 1.55 µm wavelengths on 300 mm-SOI. In Proc. 11th Int. Conf. Group IV Photonics (GFP) 31–32 (2014).
Abraham, A., Olivier, S., Marris-Morini, D. & Vivien, L. Evaluation of the performances of a silicon optical modulator based on a silicon-oxide-silicon capacitor. In Proc. 11th Int. Conf. Group IV Photonics (GFP) 3–4 (2014).
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
About this article
Cite this article
Hiraki, T., Aihara, T., Hasebe, K. et al. Heterogeneously integrated III–V/Si MOS capacitor Mach–Zehnder modulator. Nature Photon 11, 482–485 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/nphoton.2017.120
Nature Photonics (2020)
Nature Photonics (2019)
Nature Reviews Materials (2018)
Nature Photonics (2018)
Nature Photonics (2018)