Poly-crystalline low-loss aluminium oxide waveguides

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

142 Downloads (Pure)


Luminescence quenching due to ion cluster formation in erbium ion doped amorphous aluminium oxide, limits the maximum doping concentration that can be incorporated into the material and, consequently, the maximum achievable optical gain. By controlling the reactive sputtering deposition parameters, layers with different morphologies can be deposited. In this work, we investigate low propagation loss poly-crystalline aluminium oxide thin films and the effect of erbium doping on the crystallinity. We have developed a reactive sputter process to reproducibly obtain high refractive index (n~1.72 at 633 nm) poly-crystalline thin films with very low slab waveguide losses from the near-UV to the midinfrared wavelength range. Slab waveguide losses as low as 1.8 dB/cm at 407 nm and less than 0.1 dB/cm at 1550 nm of wavelength have been experimentally characterized. Both the undoped and erbium doped layers were deposited by reactive sputter coating with, a set substrate temperature of 700 °C. Preliminary TEM analyses show no discernible change in the crystallinity of the doped layers with respect to their undoped counterparts. The high optical quality of this material, in combination with a potentially increased rare-earth ion doping concentration, could pave the way towards high-gain on-chip amplifiers in different wavelength ranges and efficient on-chip lasers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIntegrated Optics
Subtitle of host publicationDevices, Materials, and Technologies XXV
EditorsSonia M. Garcia-Blanco, Pavel Cheben
ISBN (Electronic)9781510642133
Publication statusPublished - 5 Mar 2021
EventIntegrated Optics: Devices, Materials, and Technologies XXV 2021 - Virtual, Online, United States
Duration: 6 Mar 202111 Mar 2021

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


ConferenceIntegrated Optics: Devices, Materials, and Technologies XXV 2021
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityVirtual, Online


  • Aluminium oxide
  • erbium
  • low loss
  • refractive index
  • sputtering


Dive into the research topics of 'Poly-crystalline low-loss aluminium oxide waveguides'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this