Stabilization and frequency control of a DFB laser with tunable optical reflector integrated in a Silicon Photonics PIC

 

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Abstract:

We investigate the effect of tunable filtered optical feedback on a commercial DFB laser edge coupled to a silicon pho- tonic planar integrated circuit in which a tunable reflector has been implemented by means of a ring resonator-based add–drop mul- tiplexer. Controlled optical feedback allows for fine-tuning of the laser oscillation frequency. Under certain conditions, it also allows suppression of bifurcation modes triggered by reflections occurring elsewhere on the chip. A semianalytical model describing laser dy- namics under combined optical feedback from the input facet of the edge coupler and from the tunable on-chip reflector fits the mea- surements. Compensation of detrimental effects from reflections induced elsewhere on a transceiver chip may allow moving iso- lators downstream in future communications systems, facilitating direct hybrid laser integration in silicon photonic chips, provided a suitable feedback signal for a control system can be identified. Moreover, the optical frequency tuning at lower feedback levels can be used to form a rapidly tunable optical oscillator as part of an optical phase-locked loop, circumventing the problem of the ther- mal to free carrier effect crossover in the FM response of injection current-controlled semiconductor laser diodes.