Optical wavefront phase-tilt measurement using Si-photonic waveguide grating couplers Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Silicon photonic wavefront phase-tilt sensors for wavefront monitoring using surface coupling grating arrays are demonstrated. The first design employs the intrinsic angle dependence of the grating coupling efficiency to determine local wavefront tilt, with a measured sensitivity of 7 dB/°. The second design connects four gratings in an interferometric waveguide circuit to determine incident wavefront phase variation across the sensor area. In this device, one fringe spacing corresponds to 2° wavefront tilt change. These sensor elements sample a wavefront incident on the chip surface without the use of bulk optic elements, fiber arrays, or imaging arrays. Both sensor elements are less than 60 µm across and are potential unit cell sensor elements for large arrays that monitor wavefront shape across an image or pupil plane in adaptive optics systems for free-space optical communications, astronomy, and beam pointing applications.


  • Janz, S
  • Xu, DX
  • Grinberg, Y
  • Wang, S
  • Vachon, M
  • Cheben, Pavel
  • Schmid, JH
  • Melati, D

publication date

  • December 1, 2023