Wei Jiang is a professor of optical engineering in the college of engineering and applied sciences at Nanjing University (NJU). He serves as an associate director of Optical Communications Systems & Network Engineering Research Center of Jiangsu Province, and associate director of Optical Communications Engineering Research Center of Nanjing University. Prior to working at NJU, he was an associated professor in the department of electrical and computer engineering at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, USA. Prof. Jiang’s research interests include silicon photonics, photonic crystals and their applications in optical interconnects, optical communications, sensing, and computing. He proposed a waveguide superlattice and demonstrated high-density low-crosstalk waveguide integration with half-wavelength pitches, which opened the door to a new generation of optical phased arrays. Further theoretical and experimental efforts of his group recently demonstrated a half-wavelength pitch optical phased array based on a waveguide superlattice, with potential applications in LIDARs and wireless optical communications. He contributed to the fundamental understanding of silicon electro-optic and thermo-optic devices, slow light, superprism effects, and photonic crystal interface physics. In 2007, the first high-speed photonic crystal modulator was demonstrated on silicon through one of his research projects. He has served on IEEE Photonics Standards Committee, program committees for CLEO and many other conferences. Prof. Jiang received the DARPA Young Faculty Award, IEEE Region I Outstanding Teaching Award, among other honors.
Speech Title: Silicon Photonic Devices for Communications—Some Recent Key Advances
Silicon photonics has shown great potential for communication applications. We will review our recent progress on key silicon photonic devices for these applications, including high-speed modulators and optical phased arrays. High-speed modulators are widely used in optical communications and optical interconnects. While micro/nano-structure-based modulators are often adopted where small sizes and low power are desirable, Mach-Zehnder (MZ) modulators are widely used for their assumed stable performance, In reality, micro-nano/structure-based modulators often suffer from insufficient extinction ratio and sometimes may need relatively high driving voltage. The traveling-wave electrodes of MZ modulators are still susceptible to fabrication variation, causing impedance mismatch and degraded performance. We will present our recent work towards these critical issues. Silicon-based optical phased arrays (OPAs) can potentially transform free-space optical communications. Waveguide superlattice-based optical phased arrays have, for the first time, realized half-wavelength pitch OPAs. But aligning the phases of the elements of an OPA is time-consuming, becoming a bottleneck in real applications. Assisted by artificial neural networks, we have developed a rapid, non-iterative, accurate phase calibration technology for OPAs.