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IPFS News Link • Darpa

DARPA's On-chip Terabit Laser Communication Program

•, by Brian Wang

American Institute for Manufacturing Integrated Photonics (AIM Photonics), a program of NY CREATES gave $19 million in research program awards for advanced integrated photonics under The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Lasers for Universal Microscale Optical Systems (LUMOS) program. AIM Photonics is advancing technology for applications with self-driving vehicles, AR, 3D camera technology, quantum computing, military microsystems, big data, and biosensing.

LUMOS is part of the third phase of DARPA's Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) – a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment to re-energize Moore's Law.

The first LUMOS Technical Area brings high-performance lasers and optical amplifiers into advanced domestic photonics manufacturing foundries. Two research teams were selected in this area: Tower Semiconductor and SUNY Polytechnic Institute. These performers will work to demonstrate flexible, efficient on-chip optical gain in their photonics processes to enable next-generation optical microsystems for communications, computing, and sensing. LUMOS technologies will be made available to future design teams through DARPA-sponsored multi-project wafer runs.

Tower Semiconductor (NASDAQ/TASE: TSEM), the leading foundry of high value analog semiconductor solutions. Alpine Optoelectronics and Tower Semiconductor began production of the 400G PAM4 nCP4™ optical engine on Tower Semiconductor's PH18 Silicon Photonics technology platform. Alpine's nCP4™ chip converts 4 lanes of 56Gbaud electrical input into 4 lanes of optical output for use in 400Gbps DR4 transceivers to support high-speed connectivity in data center applications. They will be deploying 400Gb and 800Gb platforms over the next few years.