Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical and Computer Engineering
In the next few decades, it is likely that high bandwidth wireless and optical technologies will be placed in the spotlight as the dominant avenues for communication all over the world. It is arguable that this is currently the case, and that the expectation for higher data transfer speeds, more secure and reliable transmission, and longer communication range is on an exponential rise. Thus, much effort and emphasis is being put on these technologies to advance as quickly as possible.
For optical systems, the majority of research has been focused on the realization of all-optical transmission, that is, transmission such that no energy conversions (e.g. optical-electrical) take place in the transmission process. In many cases this has been achieved utilizing electro-optic (EO) and magneto-optic (MO) phenomena in special materials. Here, the use of interferometric techniques can enable optical switching and routing with the help of applied electric or magnetic fields to the special materials as light traverses through them.
There are many challenges in the design of these switches. For magneto-optic interferometric devices, the magnetic field generator tends to be quite large compared to the optical transceivers deployed today. Due to their large size, current and voltage requirements tend to be excessive as well. It is important to continue to reduce the size and power requirement of these devices to ensure compatibility with current systems.
In this work, new improvements to the magnetic field generators and new configurations of MO interferometric switches and routers are proposed and implemented. Additionally, studies toward a monolithically integrated MO switch are presented which include preliminary design and simulation of on-chip rib waveguides, couplers, and magnetic field generators at the micron scale.
John William Pritchard
Pritchard, John William, "New developments in magneto-optic interferometric switching" (2015). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 14502.