ORIONAS Objectives

KEY TECHNOLOGIES. HARDWARE.

ORIONAS leverages the following enabling photonic-electronic technologies:

  1. Silicon photonics
  2. SiGe BiCMOS electronics
  3. InP photonics
  4. Small form factor fiber optics
  5. Hi-rel module packaging

Using this technology toolkit ORIONAS will deliver the photonic building blocks of a modern lasercom modem suitable for small sized satellite platforms.

LASErCOM on-chip

Photonics BiCMOS

Monolithic integration of electronics & photonics for miniaturized space transceiver ICs

Small form factor fiber optics

Ultra-compact radiation-resistant low-noise fiber pre-amplifier using hi-rel SFF fiber optic components

InP photonics

Chip-scale high-power semiconductor booster amplifier in InP

Hi-rel packaging & system integration

Packaging of integrated circuits & AIT of laser modem elements

Transceiver integrated circuits

ORIONAS develops high-speed optical transceiver ICs in the “Photonics BiCMOS” integration platform offered by IHP. Using this platform, silicon photonic elements are integrated on the front-end-of-line with SiGe BiCMOS circuits bringing the following advantages: -inherent tolerance of SiGe HBTs to ionizing & non-ionizing radiation. -TRx size reduction due to the use of integrated active/passive optics & their merge with electronics on a single chip. -minimization of parasitic effects that cause bandwidth limitations.

ORIONAS will demonstrate the flexibility of the photonics-BiCMOS platform by delivering two generations of optical transceiver chipsets:

  1. ORNS-OTRx-G01: 25 Gb/s DPSK modulator/driver & receiver IC
  2. ORNS-OTRx-G02: 25 Gbaud (50 Gb/s) IQ modulator/driver & coherent receiver IC

High-power Semiconductor Optical Amplifier

ORIONAS develops high-power (1W range) semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) circuits integrated in the InP photonics platform. The HP-SOA will be used to boost the transmitter optical power in order to compensate the losses of the free space optical inter-satellite link. The HP-SOAs will be fabricated using InP materials where gain is obtained with quantum wells. Based on III-V heritage in SOA design for telecom and radio over fibre applications, the HP-SOA will be based on the Slab Coupled Optical Waveguide Amplifier (SCOWA) configuration. In order to obtain the best electrical & thermal behaviour, SOAs will be fabricated with the Semi-Insulating Buried Heterostructure (SIBH) and structures will be segmented to optimize the electrical pumping of the different amplifier sections. SOA chips will be packaged into hermetic butterfly modules together with free space polarization optics using laser welding technology. A SOA driver board will be developed to deliver a fully functional module ready for system assembly, integration & test. 

Radiation-resistant fiber pre-amplifier

ORIONAS develops a radiation-resistant optical fiber pre-amplifier that will deliver the low noise (NF<5 dB) and high optical gain (>55 dB) required at the receiver side of the optical inter-satellite link. ORIONAS low-noise optical amplifier (LNOA) will use state-of-the-art small form factor (SFF) fiber optics and will exploit G&H expertise in the production of hi-rel fiber optic components & modules for A&D and submarine network applications. The LNOA will weigh less than half of a small butter stick (<100 grams) and will occupy the footprint of a credit card, demonstrating a 80% saving in mass and unit area compared to state-of-the-art space qualified optical fiber ampifiers. The LNOA radiation resistance will be demonstrated through targeted ionizing radiation tests. The unit will employ a built-in RS-232 interface and will offer power monitoring and output power control.

Hi-rel module packaging & system integration

ORIONAS will perform packaging of the transceiver ICs to deliver the following device generations:

– 25 Gb/s DPSK transmitter through assembly of the modulator/driver IC with a DFB laser diode and a ribbon fiber array

– 25 Gb/s DPSK receiver through assembly of the receiver IC with a ribbon fiber array

– 25 Gbaud (50 Gb/s) IQ modulator module through assembly of the modulator/driver IC with a ribbon fiber array

– 25 Gbaud (50 Gb/s) coherent receiver module through assembly of the receiver IC with a ribbon fiber array

Control boards will be developed to deliver transceiver modules ready for system integration.

The transceiver modules will be assembled with the HP-SOA, LNOA and an FPGA module to demonstrate on bread-board level direct detection and coherent optical links.   

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This project has received funding from the¬†European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 822002

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