The Optical Networking and Communication
Conference & Exhibition

Los Angeles Convention Center,
Los Angeles, California, USA

SC454 - Hands-on: Silicon Photonic Circuits and Systems Design

Monday, 20 March
13:30 - 17:30

Short Course Level:

Instructor: Lukas Chrostowski1,Chris Doerr2, 1University of British Columbia, Canada, 2Acacia Communications, USA

Short Course Description:

This short course teaches participants how to design silicon photonic integrated circuits (PICs). Numerous companies are presently developing products in applications such as short-reach optical interconnects for data centres.  Commercial systems using travelling wave Mach-Zehnder modulators are becoming more common, while ring resonator / ring modulator systems are receiving significant attention due to their small size and low power consumption.  Systems are being implemented using amplitude modulation, as well as coherent communication.  Polarization diversity is required in most applications, and polarization components such as splitters and rotators are required. 

We will describe state-of-the-art silicon photonic systems including both commercialized and research results.

We will then have tutorials on the design of such systems including identifying target specifications, compact models for silicon photonic components, photonic circuit modeling, manufacturing variability analysis, and layout for fabrication and packaging.
Temporary licenses to Lumerical Solutions and open-source tools will be provided during and after the workshop for participants to complete a design.

Note that the two courses – SC432 and SC454 – can be taken independently or one after the other.  SC432 is focused on components, while SC454 is focused on systems.  SC432 includes a fabrication run, while SC454 does not.

Short Course Benefits:

This course will enable you to:

  • Describe common silicon photonic integrated designs

  • Describe how compact models for silicon photonic components are created

  • Use compact models to model silicon photonic circuits

  • Use commercial modelling tools (Lumerical Solutions)

  • Design a basic silicon photonic circuit

  • Design a silicon photonic layout

  • Identify packaging requirements for silicon photonic chips

Short Course Audience:


This course is targeted for researchers and students who want to learn how to model and design silicon photonic circuits.  Familiarity with optical communications is a prerequisite.  No previous silicon photonic design experience is required.
Participants shall bring their own laptop computers, with the required software pre-installed.  Licenses and instructions for installing Lumerical Solutions, and mask layout software, will be provided prior to the course.

Instructor Biography:

Lukas Chrostowski is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Born in Poland, he earned the B.Eng. in electrical engineering from McGill University and the PhD in electrical engineering and computer science from the University of California at Berkeley. With research interests in silicon photonics, optoelectronics, high-speed laser (VCSEL) design, fabrication and test, for applications in optical communication systems and biophotonics, he has published more than 170 journal and conference publications. He co-edited a book “High-Speed Photonics Interconnects” (2013), and co-authored the book “Silicon Photonics Design” (Cambridge University Press, 2015).  Dr. Chrostowski has been serving since 2008 as the co-director of the University of British Columbia AMPEL Nanofabrication Facility.  He is the Program Director the NSERC CREATE Silicon Electronic-Photonic Integrated Circuits (Si-EPIC) training program in Canada, and has been teaching numerous silicon photonics workshops and courses since 2008.  He spent his 2011-12 sabbatical at the University of Washington, Seattle, with Michael Hochberg’s group. Chrostowski received the Killam Teaching Prize at the University of British Columbia in 2014.  He was an elected member of the IEEE Photonics 2014-2016 Society Board of Governors. He was awarded a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Discovery Accelerator Supplements Award in 2015.

Christopher R. Doerr earned a B.S. in aeronautical engineering and a B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  Since joining Bell Labs in 1995, Doerr’s research has focused on integrated devices for optical communication.  He received the OSA Engineering Excellence Award in 2002.  He is a Fellow of IEEE and OSA.  He was Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Photonics Technology Letters from 2006-2008. He was an Associate Editor for the Journal of Lightwave Technology from 2008-2011. He was awarded the IEEE William Streifer Scientific Achievement Award in 2009.  He became a Bell Labs Fellow in 2011.  He joined Acacia Communications in 2011.


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