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24 March 2017

TowerJazz announces silicon photonic foundry process targeting optical transceiver electronics

Specialty foundry TowerJazz (which has fabrication plants at Tower Semiconductor Ltd in Migdal Haemek, Israel, and at its US subsidiaries Jazz Semiconductor Inc in Newport Beach, CA and TowerJazz Texas Inc in San Antonio, TX, and at TowerJazz Japan Ltd) has announced a new silicon photonic process (SiPho) that complements its silicon germanium (SiGe) BiCMOS processes utilized for the manufacture of optical transceiver electronics.

Further, TowerJazz is collaborating with PhoeniX Software B.V. of Enschede, The Netherlands – a vendor of photonic design automation (PDA) software used to synthesize integrated photonic circuits – to provide process design kits (PDKs) for customers who are developing optical networking and data-center interconnect applications. Silicon photonics holds the potential to become a cost-effective, scalable technology for the production of photonic integrated circuits (PICs) and addresses the high-performance requirements of these applications, says TowerJazz.

The firm’s foundry SiPho process is built to enable a wide range of optical fiber interconnect Tx and Rx front-end optical ICs. The process includes several versions of single-mode silicon waveguides, high-speed germanium photodetectors, p-n junction modulators and enablement for edge and grating couplers.

PhoeniX Software’s OptoDesigner 5.1 PIC design solution uses a unique process known as photonic synthesis to map design intent into a design-rule clean circuit layout targeted to TowerJazz’s SiPho process. Designers can use OptoDesigner’s parametric object oriented scripting environment and its integrated photonic simulators to optimize their designs to achieve an optimal layout that meets their performance and design requirements while also ensuring robust design manufacturability.

“We are excited to be entering the silicon photonics foundry space in order to provide solutions to a greater portion of the optical transceiver market for our customers,” says Dr Marco Racanelli, senior VP & general manager of TowerJazz’s RF & High Performance Analog business unit. “As a pure-play foundry, design enablement plays a critical and complementary role to the manufacturing process… PhoeniX Software has extensive experience in the silicon photonics space to bring high-value PDKs to our customers,” he adds.

“PDK-based design is key to achieving greater designer productivity and we are very excited to be working with TowerJazz to make their SiGe BiCMOS PDKs available to the datacom market,” says PhoeniX Software’s CEO Twan Korthorst. TowerJazz offers “world-class production capabilities to our mutual customers in the integrated photonics market,” he adds. PDKs for TowerJazz’ SiPho process will be available third-quarter 2017.

TowerJazz and PhoeniX are exhibiting in booths #3824 and #3538, respectively, at the Optical Fiber Communications conference & exhibition (OFC 2017) in Los Angeles (21-23 March).

See related items:

PhoeniX joins AIM Photonics manufacturing institute

AIM Photonics releases integrated silicon photonics PDK

Tags: TowerJazz silicon photonics SiGe PIC EDA software

Visit: www.towerjazz.com

Visit: www.phoenixbv.com

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