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Published July 11, 2005 | Published
Journal Article Open

Optical modulation and detection in slotted Silicon waveguides


We demonstrate a novel mechanism for low power optical detection and modulation in a slotted waveguide geometry filled with nonlinear electro-optic polymers. The nanoscale confinement of the optical mode, combined with its close proximity to electrical contacts, enables the direct conversion of optical energy to electrical energy, without external bias, via optical rectification, and also enhances electro-optic modulation. We demonstrate this process for power levels in the sub-milliwatt regime, as compared to the kilowatt regime in which optical nonlinear effects are typically observed at short length scales. Our results suggest that a new class of detectors based on nonlinear optics may be practical.

Additional Information

© 2005 Optical Society of America. Received 16 May, 2005; revised 20 June, 2005; accepted 23 June, 2005. The authors are thankful for many fruitful discussions with Hal Hagar and Bill Krug of the Boeing Corporation and gratefully acknowledge DARPA and NAVAIR for support under N00421-02-D-3223.

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