Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering 2012
Conference paper

Link power budget advantage in GI-core polymer optical waveguide link for optical printed circuit boards

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For further advancement of next-generation high-performance computers, low-power consumption, high-density, and low-cost optical interconnection technologies should be adopted, and thus, optical printed circuit boards (O-PCBs) integrating polymer optical waveguides would be a key device. In particular, for low-power consumption, the link power budget should be low enough. In the optical link that consists of two waveguides on PCBs and a graded-index (GI) multimode fiber (MMF) connecting the two PCBs, such a low power budget is expected when GI-core waveguides are utilized. Essentially low coupling loss between the GI-core waveguide and a GI-MMF is one of the reasons of the low power budget, since the mode power profile mismatch between MMFs and GI-core waveguides is smaller than that between MMFs and SI-core waveguides. In this paper, we compose an optical link of vertical cavity surface emitting laser (VCSEL)-waveguide: SI or GI-MMF-waveguide: SI or GI-PD, and quantitatively evaluate the coupling loss at each connection point. When all the components are perfectly aligned, the total coupling loss is 1.9 dB in the link with GI-core waveguide. On the other hand, the SI-core waveguide link shows 0.8 dB higher coupling loss (2.72dB) than the GI-core waveguide link. When a misalignment of ±10 ìm is added at each connection and 50-ìm gaps are added at both VCSEL-waveguide and waveguide-PD connections, the GI-waveguide link demonstrate approximately 2-dB advantage in the power budget over the SI-waveguide link. Given limited power budget consideration for high bit rate optical links (∼25 Gb/s), GI-core waveguide enabling low link power budget would be a promising component for O-PCBs.. © 2012 SPIE.