Kaiam’s Optical Wire Bond™ (OWB™) technology serves a function analogous to electrical wire bonds: to provide dense, high-performance connectivity between disparate components. OWB solves the Holy Grail problem of coupling between disparate optical technologies with high optical coupling efficiency (including mode matching), high parallelism, small size, low cost, robustness, and manufacturability.
An OWB element uses a microlens attached to a MEMS-based arm. After automated 3D alignment, the lens is soldered in place using an integral MEMS heater with 0.1um accuracy. OWB allows optical interfacing of a wide range of technologies. For instance, OWB allows an array of 4, 8, or more laser diodes to be coupled to a corresponding array of optical waveguides with low losses, where the waveguides may be silica, silicon photonics, InP, etc.
OWB enables a new generation of high-density integrated optical systems consisting of an arbitrary mix of technologies including InP, silica PLCs, SiPh, and polymer PLCs. The process is fully automated and can be applied to a wide range of applications including multi-wavelength data center transceivers, coherent long-haul transceivers, projection micro-displays, and optical sensors.
The video demonstrates Kaiam hybrid photonic integrated circuit subassembly for a 4-channel QSFP application. After all the parts are bonded down +/- 20µm tolerance, the individual microlenses are moved micromechanically to optimize alignment.