Analysis and Design of Low-Loss and Fast All-Optical Switch Elements on Silicon Nitride for Integrated Quantum Photonics

Fabian Ruf, Lars Nielsen, Nicolas Volet, Martijn Heck

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Abstract

Fast and ultra-low loss single-photon switching and routing are essential for photonic quantum computation and communication. To address this need in a scalable fashion, all-optical switches that can be fabricated in an ultra-low loss and mature Si3N4 photonic integrated circuit (PIC) foundry platform are designed and optimized for sub-ns switching times suitable for deterministic quantum-dot single-photon sources. The working principle relies on cross-phase modulation (XPM) of the single photons with a 1550-nm pump pulse and is enhanced by a ring resonator. Two different designs of the primary switch element are theoretically studied, namely a ring resonator intensity switch (RRIS) based on resonance shifting due to XPM and a ring resonator phase switch (RRPS) acting as an all-optical phase shifter in a Mach–Zehnder interferometer. As a novel approach to speed up the switching, chirped pre-emphasis and wipe sections for the pump pulses are utilized. A design tool is established from analytical expressions and serves as starting point for further optimization using a dedicated travelling-wave model (TWM). The TWM demonstrates the feasibility of both designs to be driven by either the proposed pre-emphasis pulse shape or a train of chirped Gaussian pulses. While the RRPS turns out to require less pump energy, its operation is more sensitive to pump-power fluctuations. Insertion losses below 0.1dB and a power consumption below 5nJ at 1GHz switching rates for both configurations prove the potential of this concept for scalable quantum photonic applications.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Lightwave Technology
Volume40
Issue23
Pages (from-to)7598-7609
Number of pages12
ISSN0733-8724
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

Keywords

  • Bandwidth
  • Optical interferometry
  • Optical losses
  • Optical ring resonators
  • Optical switches
  • Photonics
  • Quantum photonics
  • Silicon nitride
  • all-optical switching
  • integrated photonics
  • integrated quantum photonics
  • optical Kerr effect
  • photonic integrated circuits
  • silicon nitride

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