Drawing on the expertise of new faculty members and industry support, the University of Washington is starting a new foundry service for researchers developing silicon photonic chipsets.
The idea behind OpSIS – “optoelectronic systems integration in silicon” – is to help engineers and researchers working on different projects to share the cost of fabricating chip-scale systems.
It’s modeled on a prototyping service called MOSIS that began operating at the University of Southern California in 1981 and has been widely used by students, companies and government labs working with microprocessors.
Leading the venture is nanotechnology researcher Michael Hochberg, assistant professor of electrical engineering and director of the UW’s Institute for Photonic Integration.
Here’s how the photonics lab describes its work:
We’re interested in using the silicon photonics platform both to build interesting and important optical devices, and to explore new physical phenomena. Our projects span the space between very applied work on devices like ultra-low voltage electrooptic modulators, to interest in chip-scale nonlinear and quantum optics for novel light sources and all-optical logic circuits.
A kickoff event for OpSIS is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Tuesday at the UW. In addition to Hochberg and engineering dean, Matt O’Donnell, speakers include semiconductor pioneer Carver Mead and Justin Rattner, Intel chief technology officer.
More details are available at the OpSIS Web site.