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Optical waveguides embedded in PCBs - A real world application of 3D structures written by TPA

: Houbertz, R.; Wolter, H.; Schmidt, V.; Kuna, L.; Satzinger, V.; Wächter, C.; Langer, G.

Houbertz, R. ; Materials Research Society -MRS-:
Synthesis and Surface Engineering of Three-Dimensional Nanostructures. Online proceedings : November 26-30, Boston, Massachusetts, USA at the 2007 MRS Fall Meeting
Warrendale, Pa.: MRS, 2008 (Materials Research Society Symposium Proceedings 1054E)
Paper 1054-FF01-04
Symposium FF "Synthesis and Surface Engineering of Three-Dimensional Nanostructures" <2007, Boston/Mass.>
Materials Research Society (Fall Meeting) <2007, Boston/Mass.>
Fraunhofer ISC ()

The integration of optical interconnects in printed circuit boards (PCB) is a rapidly growing field worldwide due to a continuously increasing need for high-speed data transfer. There are many con¬cepts discussed, among which are the integration of optical fibers or the genera¬tion of waveguides by UV lithography, embossing, or direct laser writing. The devices presented so far re¬quire many different materials and process steps, but particularly also highly-sophisti¬cated assembly steps in order to couple the optoelectronic elements to the generated waveguides. In order to over¬come these restrictions, an innovative approach is presented which allows the embedding of optoelectronic components and the generation of optical waveguides in only one optical material. This material is an inorganic-organic hybrid polymer, in which the waveguides are processed by two-pho¬ton absorption (TPA) processes, initiated by ultra-short laser pulses. In particular, due to this integration and the possibility of in situ positioning the optical waveguides with respect to the optoelectronic compo¬nents by the TPA process, no complex packaging or assembly is neces¬sary. Thus, the number of necessary processing steps is significantly reduced, which also con¬tributes to the saving of resources such as energy or solvents. The material properties and the un¬derlying processes will be discussed with respect to optical data transfer in PCBs.