Abstract

Waveguide modulators incorporating paralle-plate electrodes are investigated by computer modeling. Metal-electrode structures differ from severe optical losses that are due to surface plasmons. Silicon-electrode structures exhibit lower losses. Bandwidth is limited by the resistivity and the proximity of the electrodes. Doping the silicon improves conductivity but increases optical absorption. Device optimization involves a trade-off between bandwidth and optical loss. Devices are fabricated by the use of substrates of silicon on sapphire, with rf sputtered lithium niobate films and plasma-enhanced chemical vapor-deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon for the upper electrodes. The electro-optic coefficient of these lithium niobate films is ∼50% of the value for bulk material. The results indicate the possibility of using these devices for combining silicon integrated circuits with waveguide modulators on a common substrate.

© 1993 Optical Society of America

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