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Design of a nanoelectromechanical high-index-contrast guided-wave optical switch for single-mode operation at 1.55 μm

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11 Author(s)
Povinelli, M.L. ; Center for Mater. Sci. & Eng., Massachusetts Inst. of Technol., Cambridge, MA, USA ; Bryant, R.E. ; Assefa, S. ; Johnson, S.G.
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A design is presented for a nanoelectromechanical optical switch based on the horizontal deflection of an input waveguide to align with one of two output waveguides. The use of high-index (GaAs) strip waveguides surrounded by air, designed to be single-mode at 1.55 μm, significantly decreases device dimensions as compared to previous designs. Design tradeoffs between optical and mechanical properties of the device are discussed. By means of three-dimensional numerical simulations, optical transmission is optimized for two different design strategies: butt and parallel coupling. High polarization-independent transmission (over 90%) is predicted for realistic design parameters.

Published in:

Photonics Technology Letters, IEEE  (Volume:15 ,  Issue: 9 )