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5 April 1995 Demonstration of a free-space optical interconnect in a CMOS chip
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Abstract
We have developed a hybrid optoelectronic circuit to demonstrate a free-space optical interconnect in a CMOS chip. Discrete GaAs-based optical devices are hybridly integrated with a 0.8 micrometers CMOS chip fabricated by a MOSIS foundry. The CMOS chip consists of two separate digital modules, an ALU and a ROM, communicating via a pair of optical interconnects. Each interconnect consists of a CMOS laser driver that converts full CMOS logic-level data into a suitable laser drive current, a laser-photodetector pair, and a CMOS transimpedance amplifier that converts a photocurrent from the photodetector into logic-level data. An on-chip clock is used to time the serialization and deserialization of 4-bit words of data across each interconnect at a data rate of 40 Mb/s. In order to account for limitations of the hybrid design as well as process variations, pads are provided for off-chip clock signals to override the built-in clock and therefore operate the interconnect at a transmission rate different from the design value. Each laser-photodetector pair is fabricated from a single laser structure epitaxially grown on semi-insulating GaAs substrate. Similar to a laser-photomonitor arrangement, a dry etch is used to divide the laser structure into a separate laser and photodiode. This device is then hybridly integrated with the CMOS chip to implement the proof-of-principle free-space optical interconnect. Experimental results for the optical elements and simulation results for the CMOS design are presented to demonstrate the operation of the chip.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Pablo V. Mena, Robert M. Lammert, Steve M. Kang, and James J. Coleman "Demonstration of a free-space optical interconnect in a CMOS chip", Proc. SPIE 2400, Optoelectronic Interconnects III, (5 April 1995); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.206301
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