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Core Technology Development

    NeoPhotonics has developed expertise in the design, large-scale fabrication, high-volume module manufacturing and commercial deployment of our Advanced Hybrid Photonic Integration products and technologies. The process of designing and manufacturing advanced optoelectronic integrated devices in high volume with predictable, well-characterized performance and low manufacturing costs is complex and multi-faceted. We have developed the technologies, using multiple materials platforms for photonic integration, that are required to design and manufacture complex, high-performance optoelectronic components, modules and subsystems for fiber optic networks. The basic elements of our technology are as follows:

    Mixed-material platform and optoelectronic integration technology. We utilize a set of proprietary integration platforms that provide optoelectronic functionality on silicon and other integrated compound semiconductor substrates including Indium Phosphide, Gallium Arsenide and Silicon Germanium and integrated combinations of these platforms. We utilize micron and sub-micron scale structures of multiple silicon dioxide and Indium Phosphide waveguides to fabricate optoelectronic functional elements such as lasers, detectors, modulators, interferometers, integrated optical filters, switches and variable attenuators. We integrate these functional design elements into optoelectronic devices to achieve a desired functionality and specification that is incorporated into our products.

    Similarly, we use Gallium Arsenide and Silicon Germanium integration platforms for drivers, amplifiers and related high-speed electronic control functions for our integrated optoelectronic devices.

    Advanced Hybrid Photonic Integration. Through precise fabrication and positioning of physical features, we can integrate numerous different optoelectronic devices, which are fabricated on separate wafers from different semiconductor and related materials, matching the material to the function to create improved performance by using the highest performance elements of each type. For example, our hybrid integration allows us to integrate active devices, such as photodiodes or lasers fabricated using Indium Phosphide, with high-performance passive devices, such as interferometers, switches, routers and filters, fabricated on silicon, and to mate electronic amplifiers made with Silicon Germanium or drivers made with Gallium Arsenide directly to optical elements made with Silicon or Indium Phosphide.

    This ability to combine specific functional elements out of optimized materials not only allows for very compact and low power components, but also through the intimate coupling of different elements, makes possible completely new functions. An example of this multi-platform architecture is found in the coherent optical communications domain where we intimately couple a passive interferometer with separate quadrature components carrying information and with photo detectors to turn a high speed optical signal into data-rich electrical signals for processing.

    Hardware and firmware integration. We also sell our products as modules and subsystems which contain electronic hardware and firmware controls that interface directly with our customers’ systems. We design the electronic hardware and develop the firmware for our optical products to meet customer specifications.

    Fabrication and manufacturing processes. We have developed expertise in the technology domains relevant to high-volume fabrication and manufacturing of our optoelectronic integrated circuit products using wafer-scale processes and including the complex interaction of electro-optic, thermal-optic and mechanical micro-thermal features. Our complex manufacturing steps are analogous to many processes used in the semiconductor industry. Each integrated element is tested and characterized using our proprietary test equipment before incorporation into our products.

    Circuit design and design-for-manufacturing tools. We use a comprehensive set of proprietary as well as industry standard software design tools, to model relevant geometries, dimensions and thermal management for a broad range of photonic devices. With these tools, we develop products with minimal design iterations and manage precision manufacturing to a narrow range of high performance specifications.

Company Profile

Year Founded:
1996

Employees:
approximately 2500

Global Presence:
Asia, North America, Europe