The generic foundry approach is initiating a revolution in micro and nanophotonics,  just as it did in microelectronics more than thirty years ago. There is no doubt that generic integration causes a dramatic reduction in the entry costs when applying Photonic ICs in novel or improved products and brings them within reach for many SMEs and larger companies.

So far, most applications have been in the field of telecommunications and data communications, but presently they are becoming much broader; examples are fibre sensor readout units, gas sensors, medical diagnostics, metrology, THz and antenna systems.

The business case for many companies targeting Photonic ICs (PICs) in novel or improved products is a strong one. We also see a rapidly growing market for PIC designers. For foundries manufacturing generic PICs there will be an increasingly attractive business case as the market volume of PICs grows. However, in the start-up phase, which may last a few years, foundry operation will desirably be combined with other chip based products and services.

In the coming years we foresee a further increase in the performance and the maturity of the three JePPIX foundry platforms (provided by Fraunhofer HHI, SMART Photonics and LioniX International). The technology is already competitive with application-specific processes.  The development of process capabilities and performance will be accompanied by the development of sophisticated, fab-calibrated, Process Design Kits which will provide the users with models and tools for accurate and efficient design of Photonic ICs. Standardized packages are also being developed within the JePPIX community. Access to a high performance package available at a reasonable cost is equally important for rapid prototyping and product development. The roadmap is divided into: