PI’s Fast Multi-Channel Photonics Alignment Engines (FMPA) are based on a highly specialized digital motion controller (E-712) and a hybrid active alignment mechanism to achieve the required long travel ranges without sacrificing stability, resolution or alignment speed.
Silicon Photonics (SiP) means photonic devices are now being fabricated alongside microelectronics on silicon wafers. Testing and packaging these requires nanoscale alignments across multiple channels with high throughput. Testing (especially at the wafer level) and packaging economics both demand extraordinary speed and parallelism. SiP is a mission-critical, industry-wide initiative across the semiconductor field, and also the animating energy behind photonics’ resurgence. PI’s FMPA is the fastest, most flexible, most robust solution.
FMPA is implemented in the E-712 controller’s modular firmware to enable fast, simultaneous alignment and tracking of multichannel couplings in multiple degrees of freedom. A broad variety of coarse/fine mechanisms can be used, enabling a spectrum of applications from undiced wafer to final package. Long-travel, closed-loop piezo nanopositioners ensure high throughput and reliable reproducibility. High-precision stage stack or hexapod options accommodate any application up to 6 DOFs per coupling.
Alignment options include a new multidimensional gradient search for aligning and tracking any number of input and output couplings even if they interact. Scanning and modeling functionalities identify global maxima and accurately determine the centroid of quasi-Gaussian, tilted Gaussian, top-hat and tilted top-hat couplings at high speed. Typical alignment modalities complete within a few hundred milliseconds, and time for gradient search alignment and tracking is virtually independent of the number of couplings and degrees-of-freedom. The F-712 high-speed optical power meter is recommended for high-throughput applications.