Project Overview

Project title: Development of low-cost technologies for the fabrication of high-performance telecommunication lasers
Acronym: DeLight
Project identifier: No 224366
FP7 Instrument: Specific targeted research or innovation project STREP
EC funding: 3 300 000 €
Overall Cost: 4 782 181 €
The DeLight Project is funded within the Seventh Framework Programme (Theme FP7-ICT-2007-2-3.5 - Photonic components and subsystems)
Project Status: Execution
Duration: 36 months
Start Date: 2008-09-01
End Date: 2011-08-31

The DeLight project aims at developing advanced structures and technologies, in particular nano-imprint lithography (NIL), for the low-cost fabrication of high-performance telecommunication lasers working at 1.3 µm and 1.55 µm. Surface gratings a thousand times smaller than the diameter of human hair (illustrated in Fig. 1) will be used to generate ultra-pure light, while multiple laser sections will provide direct-modulation speeds capable of sending the content of approximately 10 full DVDs per second.

Fig. 1. Laterally-corrugated ridge waveguide surface gratings with a period of 400 nm.

Fig. 2: Electron-photon and photon-photon resonances in the direct-modulation response.

The fabrication techniques currently used for distributed feedback (DFB) and distributed Bragg reflector (DBR) semiconductor lasers include overgrowth, which leads to problems with yield, performance and device cost. The DeLight project will remove the need of overgrowth by making use of surface gratings. Nano-imprint lithography will be developed as a production tool for such gratings to reduce the fabrication costs further.

Also, by exploiting high-order photon-photon resonances in multiple longitudinal section lasers, DeLight will extend the direct-modulation bandwidth far beyond the current limits imposed by electron-photon resonance, as illustrated in Fig. 2. This will reduce the cost and complexity of high-speed optical transmitters by eliminating the need of an external modulator.