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Agile Photonic Integrated Systems-on-Chip enabling WDM Terabit Networks (APACHE)
Start date: 01 Apr 2008, End date: 30 Sep 2011 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The APACHE project will develop new compact, scalable and cost-optimized photonic integrated components that will be capable of generating, regenerating and receiving amplitude- (OOK) and phase- (DPSK, QPSK) encoded optical signals for high capacity (>100Gb/s) WDM networks. The APACHE concept is based on developing devices having both multi-functionality and agility in order to reach Terabit capacities on a single photonic integrated chip. The technology is based on the combination of indium phosphide monolithic elements, silicon submounts and silica-on-silicon planar lightwave circuits for achieving cost-effectiveness, high yield, small footprint, low power consumption and device scaling far in advance of the level commercially available today. The APACHE integration approach includes an increase in scale for both horizontal and vertical integration through a "monolithic-on-hybrid" technology. Horizontal integration (the serial increase in the number of and type of components hybridly integrated) will be implemented using low loss passive assembly. Using this technique, the integration of different photonic elements such as lasers, amplifiers, modulators and filters will be achieved. In parallel, vertical integration (increasing the complexity of the optical components from single function devices to large arrays using monolithic InP integration, which are also subsequently hybridly integrated) will provide a scaleable and low cost platform for the realisation of compact and low power consumption modules. Phase and amplitude modulators (EAM, MZIs and nested MZIs) will be fabricated exploiting InP technology, opposed to lithium niobate (LiNbO3), for achieving at least a factor of twenty in footprint reduction, lower driving voltages and increased stability. APACHE will integrate initial research prototypes within the lifetime of the project and will develop exploitation plans for future commercialization of the technology into metro and core network equipment.
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