Towards a foundry model for micro- and nanophotonic ICS, a vision for Europe
Photonics is a rapidly growing sector in the global economy. Optical communications, optical disks, digital cameras, lighting, lasers and optical sensors are just a few examples. In comparison to electronics, most photonic equipment is still large and expensive. Just like in micro-electronics, many applications can be realized in a much more compact and cost-effective way by integrating the required functionality in a single chip.
So far, the progress in photonic integration technology has been hampered by the large variety in photonic devices and technologies, and the fact that most integration technologies are specific for the applications for which they have been developed. As a result the market for integrated photonics is too fragmented to justify the investments for developing an integration technology to a level that really leads to substantial cost reductions, and this, in turn, prevents rapid growth of the applications.
* This is a read only document, from the historical archive of the technology