IEEE Photonics Society

Boston Photonics Society Chapter

Boston Chapter of the IEEE Photonics Society


May 17, 2012
7:00 PM

MIT Lincoln Laboratory

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Silicon Integrated Optoelectronics: A Transition From Devices to Systems

Prof. Michael Hochberg, University of Delaware, Newark, DE


Prof. Michael Hochberg, University of Delaware, Newark, DE

Abstract:  CMOS-compatible silicon is not an obvious material system for building high-performance optical devices.   But, over the last ten years, it has become possible to build fairly complex integrated optical systems at telecommunications wavelengths on electronics-compatible silicon substrates.  In fact, over the last few years, the complexity of these systems has been approximately doubling every year, and this trend is projected to continue for at least the next several years.  

With a combination of CMOS electronics and photonics in the same chip, we can gain control of both photons and electrons, while preserving the powerful economics of the VLSI revolution.  Furthermore, silicon waveguides can be   engineered for low optical loss and high cladding overlap, while preserving nano-scale modal areas:  As a result, it is possible to add a variety of cladding materials in order to bring new functionality into the silicon system, for applications ranging from nonlinear optics to biosensing.

The focus of this talk will be on the OPSIS project (, which is a new initiative aimed at creating an open infrastructure for building fully integrated optoelectronic devices in silicon, and on some of the new science and engineering that are enabled by these devices.


Biography:  Michael Hochberg is an Associate Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Delaware.  He was a faculty member at the University of Washington in Seattle from 2007 to 2011. He received his BS (Physics, 2002), his MS (Applied Physics, 2005) and his PhD (Applied Physics, 2006) from Caltech, and he was awarded the Demetriades-Tsafka Prize in Nanotechnology for the best dissertation by a graduating Ph.D. student in the field of Nanotechnology. As a graduate student, he worked on developing integrated nonlinear optical    devices using silicon photonics. He was also the recipient of an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and, as an undergraduate, of a merit-based fellowship from Caltech. As an undergraduate, Hochberg co-founded two companies: Simulant, which sold the first commercial distributed FDTD code, and Luxtera, a venture-funded company working to commercialize silicon photonics, where he worked between undergraduate and graduate school. He is a member of the faculty at the University of Washington, where he was the recipient of a 2007 Air Force Office of Scientific Research Young Investigators Program award, as well as a Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering (PECASE) in 2009.


Location:  MIT Lincoln Laboratory