III-V-on-Si Photonic Crystal Nanocavity Laser Technology for Optical Static Random Access Memories

Theonitsa Alexoudi, Dimitrios Fitsios, Alexandre Bazin, Paul Monnier, Rama Raj, Amalia Miliou, George T. Kanellos, Nikos Pleros, Fabrice Raineri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)
308 Downloads (Pure)


Heterogeneous integration of III-V semiconductors on silicon has gained considerable momentum fueled by the need to implement fully functional photonic devices and circuits in a CMOS compatible platform. In this communication, we report on a III-V photonic crystal (PhC) nanocavity, heterogeneously integrated on a silicon-on-insulator platform, to form a PhC nanocavity laser capable of exhibiting two elementary static random access memory (SRAM) cell functions individually, namely switching and latching operations under a high-speed, bit-level regime. As such, the PhC nanocavity laser is examined as a generic logic functions building block, suitable toward multiGb/s energy-efficient, optical SRAM cells with minimal device footprint. The proposed device occupies a total area of only 6.2 μm2, rendering in this way the demonstrated memory element the smallest among the integrated optical memories presented so far. Bit-level SRAM cell operation requires two elementary functions: the access gate (AG) switching function and set-reset flip-flop (SR-FF) latching function. At first, AG switching operation is evaluated through successful wavelength conversion at 10 Gb/s, revealing a power penalty of 1 dB at 10-9 BER and a switching energy of only 4.8 fJ/bit. Then, fully functional SR-FF memory operation is successfully demonstrated, exhibiting error-free operation with negative power penalty at 5 Gb/s and switching energies of 6.4 fJ/bit. FF operation at higher speeds of 10 Gb/s with reduced switching energy levels of 3.2 fJ/bit is also experimentally investigated. Both logic operations were demonstrated separately with the same PhC nanocavity laser device exhibiting <50 ps switching times and evaluated under real-type data traffic patterns, raising expectations for beyond 20 Gb/s capabilities toward implementing energy-efficient, ultracompact and high-speed true optical SRAM setups for Datacom applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7517367
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics
Issue number6
Early online date20 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016


  • access gate
  • Optical flip flop
  • Optical memories
  • photonic crystal nanocavity laser
  • wavelength conversion


Dive into the research topics of 'III-V-on-Si Photonic Crystal Nanocavity Laser Technology for Optical Static Random Access Memories'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this