Design and Analysis of Integrated Optic Waveguide Delay Line Phase Shifters for Microwave Photonic Application
Honnungar, Rajini V
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Microwave Photonics(MWP) has been defined as the study of photonic devices which operate at microwave frequencies and also their applications to microwave and optical systems. One or more electrical signals at microwave frequencies are transported over the optic link ,with electrical to optical and optical to electrical conversion on the transmission and receiving side respectively. The key advantages of microwave photonic links over conventional electrical transmission systems such as coaxial cables or waveguides ,includes reduced size, weight and cost, immunity to electromagnetic interference ,low dispersion and high data transfer capacity. Integrated Optics is the name given to a new generation of opto-electronic systems in which the familiar wires and cables are replaced by light-waveguiding optical fibers, and conventional integrated circuits are replaced by optical integrated circuits (OICs).Microwave Photonics with photonic integration can add the benefits of reduction in system size, losses, short path lengths leading to more efficient cost effective systems. In this thesis, a new approach for using 1-D linear arrays of curved waveguides as delay lines is presented. We propose a design for a passive phase shifter obtained by curved waveguide delay lines. The modulated RF signal obtains the phase shift in the optical domain which is transferred to the RF signal by heterodyning techniques .This phase shift is independent of the RF frequency and hence the Beam squinting which occurs in the conventional RF phase shifter systems is avoided in the proposed system. Switching between different lengths of the bent/curved waveguides can produce variable phase shifts ranging from 0 to 2 radians. The use of curved waveguides for delay generation and optimization of various parameters are the main topics of the research problem. The need for delay line is large and most of these were implemented previously using long optical fiber cables. More precise delays could be obtained by using waveguide delay lines as compared to fiber delay lines. Waveguides paves way for design in smaller dimensions ranging from m to nm in integrated optics. The differential phase shift for a signal propagating in a waveguide from waveguide theory is given as which clearly indicates that the differential phase shifts could be obtained in accordance with differential path lengths Δl with β as the propagation constant. S-bend waveguide sections of different lengths along with straight waveguide as reference for each section are employed. The phase delay is passively obtained by a differential path length change, where various phase shift values can be obtained by switching between different differential path lengths. Since the optical phase delay generated is in- dependent of the input RF frequency. A shift in the RF frequency, at the input will not change the phase or beam pointing angle when the phase shifter is employed for beam pointing in case of Phased Array Antenna applications. A 1-bit phase shifter is the firrst step in the design which could be further extended to n-bit phase shifter. Here 1-bit or n-bit ,is one where n can take any integer value. Each bit is composed of a reference phase signal pathway and a delayed phase signal pathway. When the optical signal goes every single bit through the reference phase the phase shift is ‘0’ radians ,the other is through the delayed path which is . For every n-bit, 2n delays can be obtained. For the 1-bit,2 delays are obtained. Switching between the path lengths is done using the directional coupler switches. Th optimization of different parameters of the S-bend waveguide delay line has been realized and studied. The design and optimisation of a 1-bit optical RF phase shifter is discussed which could be extended to n-bit phase shifters. These S-bends are studied analytically. Beam Propagation Method (BPM)is employed for modeling and simulation of the proposed device. An interferometric configuration is considered for practical measurement of optical phase. In this configuration the phase change is translated into amplitude or intensity measurement. One of the arms of the Maczehdner Interferometer has no path length change while the other arm has an S-bend structure which provides the path length difference as compared to the reference path, and hence produces the necessary phase shift at the output of the interferometer as required. By changing the path length difference between the two arms of the interferometer ,a change in intensity is produced at the output of the interferometer. In this study, integrated optic curved waveguide delay line phase shifters are designed and analyzed, considering the Titanium Di used Lithium Niobate Technology. This is because it has good electro-optic properties necessary for designing switches used for switching between delay segments. Practical parameters that can be fabricated are employed in the design and simulation studies reported here. Fabrication is also done using the Lithium Niobate Technology. However the fabrication studies are excluded from the main stream, as further fabrication studies are necessary to realise the actual devices de- signed. The fabrication aspects are left as scope for further development. The fabricated devices are shown as appendix to the thesis. Organisation of the thesis Chapter 1 gives the introduction to the fields of Microwave Photonics and Integrated optics and its applications. Chapter 2discusses the curved waveguide theory and design with coverage of materials and methods employed in the proposed system. Chapter 3 discusses the different types of delay lines and the design of the 1-bit phase shifter which can be extended to the design of a n-bit phase shifter with both analytical and simulation results. Chapter 4 discusses the method of phase measurement for the n-bit phase shifter and the possible applications where the phase shifter could be employed. Chapter 5 discusses conclusions and future work in the proposed area of work. Appendix A discusses the loss calculations for the Cosine S-bend waveguide. Appendix B gives the fabrication details. The references form the end part of the thesis.
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