Intel, UC Santa Barbara Develop World's First Hybrid Silicon Laser

Subject: General Tech | September 18, 2006 - 03:53 PM |

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 18,
2006 — Researchers from Intel Corporation and the University of
California, Santa Barbara
(UCSB) have built the world's first
electrically powered Hybrid Silicon Laser using standard silicon
manufacturing processes. This breakthrough addresses one of the last
major barriers to producing low-cost, high-bandwidth silicon photonics
devices for use inside and around future computers and data centers.

The researchers were able to combine the
light-emitting properties of Indium Phosphide with the light-routing
capabilities of silicon into a single hybrid chip. When voltage is
applied, light generated in the Indium Phosphide enters the silicon
waveguide to create a continuous laser beam that can be used to drive
other silicon photonic devices. A laser based on silicon could drive
wider use of photonics in computers because the cost can be greatly
reduced by using high-volume silicon manufacturing techniques.