2D materials in electro-optic modulation: energy efficiency, electrostatics, mode overlap, material transfer and integration
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Here we discuss the physics of electro-optic modulators deploying 2D materials. We include a scaling laws analysis and show how energy-efficiency and speed change for three underlying cavity systems as a function of critical device length scaling. A key result is that the energy-per-bit of the modulator is proportional to the volume of the device, thus making the case for submicron-scale modulators possible deploying a plasmonic optical mode. We then show how Graphene’s Pauli-blocking modulation mechanism is sensitive to the device operation temperature, whereby a reduction of the temperature enables a 10× reduction in modulator energy efficiency. Furthermore, we show how the high-index tunability of graphene is able to compensate for the small optical overlap factor of 2D-based material modulators, which is unlike classical silicon-based dispersion devices. Lastly, we demonstrate a novel method towards a 2D material printer suitable for cross-contamination free and on-demand printing. The latter paves the way to integrate 2D materials seamlessly into taped-out photonic chips.
V.S., L.B are supported by the National Science Foundation under award number NSF DMREF 1436330. V.S. and R.A. are supported by the Army Research Office under contract number W911NF-16-2-0194.
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