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MOCVD System for LiNbO3 Thin Film Waveguide Modulators and Optical Switches

Award Information

Department of Defense
Missile Defense Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2002 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2002
Title: MOCVD System for LiNbO3 Thin Film Waveguide Modulators and Optical Switches
Agency / Branch: DOD / MDA
Contract: N00014-02-M-0289
Award Amount: $70,000.00


Electro-optical modulators and switches are needed for increased speed, capacity and flexibility of modern optical communications systems. The designs for these devices exist, as do materials with suitable electro optical properties, such as LiNbO3.However, their potential has not been realized, due to the limitations of diffused structures in bulk LiNbO3 crystals. Recently, our STTR partner at The University of Wisconsin - Madison (UWM) have demonstrated that high quality epitaxial LiNbO3 thinfilms can be produced by MOCVD. The UWM team has also invented a simple process for defining patterned structures from these films. This technology opens the way for a new class of electro-optical devices, including compact high-speed modulators andoptical switches.Structured Materials Industries, Inc. (SMI) has a long history developing MOCVD systems for complex oxide films. UWM will work with SMI to transition the epitaxial LiNbO3 film technology to commercial viability. We will also partner with a commercialsupplier of electro-optical components, to provide technical guidance to the Phase I/II efforts and commercialize the resulting products in Phase III. Together, this team is well positioned to commercialize LiNbO3 thin film waveguide devices. UWM hasinvented the needed process technology and SMI will develop the necessary commercial hardware. Optical communications systems represent a multi-billion dollar market with double digit annual growth rates. Fiber optic networks are being implemented inindustry, defense and domestic and international telecommunications. Our proposed technology will enable new products that will add increased speed, capacity and flexibility to growing optical communications networks. We anticipate the products developedfrom this effort to achieve a significant market share by the year 2005.

Principal Investigator:

Nick M. Sbrockey

Business Contact:

Gary S. Tompa
Small Business Information at Submission:

Structured Materials Industries
120 Centennial Ave. Piscataway, NJ 08854

EIN/Tax ID: 223175106
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
University of Wisconsin - Madison
Room 460 Peterson Bldg., 1415 Engineering Drive
Madison, WI 53706
Contact: Charles Hoffman
Contact Phone: (608) 262-0252
RI Type: Nonprofit college or university