Flexible multimode polymer waveguides for high-speed short-reach communication links

N. Bamiedakis, F. Shi, D. Chu, R. V. Penty, I. H. White

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter in a published conference proceeding


Multimode polymer waveguides have attracted great interest for use in high-speed short-reach communication links as they can be cost-effectively integrated onto standard PCBs using conventional methods of the electronics industry and provide low loss (<0.04 dB/cm at 850 nm) and high bandwidth (>30 GHz×m) interconnection. The formation of such waveguides on flexible substrates can further provide flexible low-weight low-Thickness interconnects and offer additional freedom in the implementation of high-speed short-reach optical links. These attributes make these flexible waveguides particularly attractive for use in low-cost detachable chip-To-chip links and in environments where weight and shape conformity become important, such as in cars and aircraft. However, the highly-multimoded nature of these waveguides raises important questions about their performance under severe flex due to mode loss and mode coupling. In this work therefore, we investigate the loss, crosstalk and bandwidth performance of such waveguides under out-of plane bending and in-plane twisting under different launch conditions and carry out data transmission tests at 40 Gb/s on a 1 m long spiral flexible waveguide under flexure. Excellent optical transmission characteristics are obtained while robust loss, crosstalk and bandwidth performance are demonstrated under flexure. Error-free (BER<10-12) 40 Gb/s data transmission is achieved over the 1 m long spiral waveguide for a 180° bend with a 4 mm radius. The obtained results demonstrate the excellent optical and mechanical properties of this technology and highlight its potential for use in real-world systems.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOptical Interconnects XVIII
EditorsHenning Schroder, Ray T. Chen
ISBN (Electronic)9781510615618
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018
EventOptical Interconnects XVIII 2018 - San Francisco, USA United States
Duration: 29 Jan 201831 Jan 2018

Publication series

NameOptical Interconnects Conference
ISSN (Print)2376-8665


ConferenceOptical Interconnects XVIII 2018
Country/TerritoryUSA United States
CitySan Francisco


  • optical interconnects
  • Polymer waveguides
  • Waveguide bandwidth
  • Waveguide components

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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