Optimizations of Double Titanium Nitride Thermo-Optic Phase-Shifter Heaters Using SOI Technology

Eylon Eliyahu Krause, Dror Malka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


A commercial thermo-optic phase shifter (TOPS) is an efficient solution to the imbalance problem in the fabrication process of Mach-Zehnder modulator (MZM) arms. The TOPS consumes electrical power and transforms it into thermal energy, which changes the real part of the effective refractive index at the waveguide and adjusts the MZM transfer function to work in the linear region. The common model being used today is constructed with only one heater; however, this solution requires more electrical power, which can increase the transmitter system cost. To reduce the system energy cost, we propose a pioneering optimal double titanium nitride heater model under forward biasing at 1550 nm wavelength using the standard silicon-on-insulator technology. Numerical investigations were carried out on the key relative geometrical parameters, heat distribution at the silicon layer, thermal crosstalk, and laser wavelength drift. Results show that the optimal TOPS design can function with a low electrical power of 19.1 mW to achieve a π-phase shift, with a low thermal crosstalk of 0.404 and very low optical losses over 1 mm length. Thus, the proposed device can be used for improving the imbalance problem in MZMs with low electrical power consumption and low losses. This functionality can be utilized to obtain better performances in transmitter systems for data centers and long-range optical communication system applications.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number20
StatePublished - 19 Oct 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • MZM
  • SOI
  • phase shifter
  • silicon
  • titanium nitride


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