Silicon Photonics refers to the integration of photonic components and technologies with silicon-based semiconductor materials to enable the generation, manipulation, and detection of light (photons). Silicon, a dominant material in traditional electronic integrated circuits, is leveraged to create photonic devices that can process and transmit information using light signals.


Radio-Frequency Linear Analysis and Optimization of Silicon Photonic Neural Networks

Broadband analog signal processors utilizing silicon photonics have demonstrated a significant impact in numerous application spaces, offering unprecedented bandwidths, dynamic range, and tunability. In the past decade, microwave photonic techniques have been applied to neuromorphic processing, resulting in the development of novel photonic neural network architectures. Neuromorphic photonic systems can enable machine learning capabilities at extreme bandwidths and speeds. Herein, low-quality factor microring resonators are implemented to demonstrate broadband optical weighting. In addition, silicon photonic neural network architectures are critically evaluated, simulated, and optimized from a radio-frequency performance perspective. This analysis highlights the linear front-end of the photonic neural network, the effects of linear and nonlinear loss within silicon waveguides, and the impact of electrical preamplification.

A system-on-chip microwave photonic processor solves dynamic RF interference in real-time with femtosecond latency

Radio-frequency interference is a growing concern as wireless technology advances, with potentially life-threatening consequences like interference between radar altimeters and 5?G cellular networks. Mobile transceivers mix signals with varying ratios over time, posing challenges for conventional digital signal processing (DSP) due to its high latency. These challenges will worsen as future wireless technologies adopt higher carrier frequencies and data rates. However, conventional DSPs, already on the brink of their clock frequency limit, are expected to offer only marginal speed advancements. This paper introduces a photonic processor to address dynamic interference through blind source separation (BSS). Our system-on-chip processor employs a fully integrated photonic signal pathway in the analogue domain, enabling rapid demixing of received mixtures and recovering the signal-of-interest in under 15 picoseconds. This reduction in latency surpasses electronic counterparts by more than three orders of magnitude. To complement the photonic processor, electronic peripherals based on field-programmable gate array (FPGA) assess the effectiveness of demixing and continuously update demixing weights at a rate of up to 305?Hz. This compact setup features precise dithering weight control, impedance-controlled circuit board and optical fibre packaging, suitable for handheld and mobile scenarios. We experimentally demonstrate the processor’s ability to suppress transmission errors and maintain signal-to-noise ratios in two scenarios, radar altimeters and mobile communications. This work pioneers the real-time adaptability of integrated silicon photonics, enabling online learning and weight adjustments, and showcasing practical operational applications for photonic processing.

Real-Time Blind Source Separation with Integrated Photonics for Wireless Signals

We demonstrate, for the first time, real-time blind source separation of interfering GHz transmitters using photonic weights controlled by an RF-System-on-Chip FPGA. This analog system achieves multi-antenna signal separation with millisecond execution latency.

Time Series Prediction and Classification using Silicon Photonic Neuron with Self-Connection

We experimentally demonstrated the real-time operation of a photonic neuron with a self-connection, a prerequisite for integrated recurrent neural networks (RNNs). After studying two applications, we propose a photonics-assisted platform for time series prediction and classification.