(19)
(11)EP 3 035 092 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
20.05.2020 Bulletin 2020/21

(21)Application number: 14198312.2

(22)Date of filing:  16.12.2014
(51)Int. Cl.: 
G02B 6/136  (2006.01)
G02B 6/12  (2006.01)
G02B 6/13  (2006.01)

(54)

Integrated semiconductor optical coupler.

In einem Halbleiter integrierter optischer Koppler

Coupleur optique à semi-conducteur intégré


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(43)Date of publication of application:
22.06.2016 Bulletin 2016/25

(73)Proprietor: IMEC VZW
3001 Leuven (BE)

(72)Inventors:
  • Absil, Philippe
    3001 Leuven (BE)
  • Selvaraja, Shankar Kumar
    3001 Leuven (BE)

(74)Representative: Patent Department IMEC 
IMEC vzw Patent Department Kapeldreef 75
3001 Leuven
3001 Leuven (BE)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A1- 2 685 297
US-A1- 2014 294 341
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    Field



    [0001] The present disclosure relates to integrated semiconductor based photonics devices and a method for fabrication thereof, in particular to integrated dielectric waveguides and a mono crystalline semiconductor layer suitable for optical mode, coupled to the integrated dielectric waveguide.

    State of the art



    [0002] Integrated silicon based photonics currently include dielectric waveguides in combination with optical coupled silicon waveguides in a single device. The dielectric waveguide has a waveguide core made of amorphous dielectric material. The silicon waveguide carries light in a waveguide core made of single crystal silicon.

    [0003] The dielectric waveguide when coupled to an optical fibre has a low loss, exhibits lower propagation loss and has a wide spectral bandwidth. Silicon waveguide can be used in the realization of active optical devices such as modulators, detectors and others.

    [0004] International patent application WO2014/047443 discloses wafer scale integration of ultra-low-loss dielectric waveguides with silicon and/or compound semiconductor waveguides on a common substrate. The method disclosed is based on the fact that the silicon and or compound semiconductor waveguides and other active optical devices are formed after the dielectric waveguide has been formed and annealed at high temperature (typically above 900°C). To enable this, a bonding step is introduced that defines the cladding layer of the dielectric waveguide. Although the method allows to combine two disparate waveguide technologies by a bonding step, it introduces a bonding interface in the cladding layer between the dielectric waveguide core and the first region of the semiconductor layer that is optically coupled to the dielectric waveguide core.

    [0005] This bonding has a detrimental effect on the optical coupling between the dielectric waveguide core and the first region of the semiconductor layer through the inter-waveguide cladding layer. This detrimental effect is caused by a limited control of the thickness of the inter-waveguide cladding layer between the dielectric waveguide core and the first region of the semiconductor layer. Firstly, the cladding deposition, usually performed by chemical vapour deposition (CVD), has a finite controllability. Secondly, the required polishing step of this nascent cladding layer prior to bonding is not well controlled. Chemical Mechanical Polishing (CMP) is used to polish the nascent cladding layer. This technique is known in the art to suffer from oxide loss, dishing and erosion, and these effects will cause local and global thickness variation in the thickness of the inter-waveguide cladding layer after the bonding step. The thickness is nevertheless a critical design parameter for the optical coupling between the dielectric waveguide core and the first region of the semiconductor layer. Especially on wafer scale these thickness variations will be more pronounced and cause dispersion in optical coupling observed in multiple identical optical integrated devices on a single wafer.

    [0006] International patent application WO2014/047443 further discloses that the total thickness after bonding of the inter-waveguide cladding is equal to the combined thickness of the nascent cladding layer and thickness of the thermally grown oxide.

    [0007] International patent application WO2014/047443 further discloses that the thickness of the nascent cladding layer can be controlled with extremely high precision, and that this control of thickness is used to enable high precision of the final total thickness by controlling the thermal oxidation and tailoring the thickness of the nascent cladding layer to the desired total thickness minus a measured value of the thickness of the thermally grown oxide. This method only allows compensation for measured (average) value of the thickness variation and does not take into account the local thickness variations introduced by the CMP, because the thermally grown oxide is conformal and will exhibit the same thickness over the whole surface the local variation will remain present in the final total thickness.

    [0008] US patent application US2014/0294341 A1, discloses a manufacturing method for an integrated optical circuit device. More specific embodiments relevant to the current disclosure are as illustrated in FIG. 5A, FIG. 5B and FIG. 5C, where a SOI substrate is provided, in which a single-crystal silicon layer having the thickness of 220 nm is provided on an Si substrate 31, via an SiO2 film 32 having the thickness of 2 mu m and being a BOX layer, and the single-crystal silicon layer is etched, so as to form a single-crystal Si core 33. Next, as illustrated in FIG. 6A, FIG. 6B and FIG. 6C, an SiO2 film 37 is formed in such a manner that its thickness on the single-crystal Si core 33 is 1 mu m, so as to form a clad layer. Then, an SiN film having the thickness of 300 nm is deposited, and is etched to form SiN cores 38.

    [0009] European patent application EP 2 685 297 A1, discloses a process for manufacturing a photonic circuit comprising: manufacturing on a first wafer a first layer stack comprising an underclad oxide layer and a high refractive index waveguide layer; patterning the high refractive index waveguide layer to generate a passive photonic structures; planarizing the first layer stack with a planarizing oxide layer having a thickness below 300 nanometers above the high refractive index waveguide layer; annealing the patterned high refractive index waveguide layer before and/or after the planarizing oxide layer; manufacturing on a second wafer a second layer stack comprising a detachable mono-crystalline silicon waveguide layer; transferring and bonding the first layer stack and the second layer stack; manufacturing active photonic devices in the mono-crystalline silicon waveguide layer; and realizing evanescent coupling between the mono-crystalline silicon waveguide layer and the high refractive index waveguide layer. Patent application US 2014/0294341 discloses a method to manufacture an optical spot size converter, the device itself comprising an optical coupling between a single crystal Si core (33) and multiple SiN cores (38). The function of the actual spot size converter can be understood with reference to original FIG. 7 A from US 2014/0294341. Light (with a wide spot size) is coupled into a wide first core (22) and then coupled optically to a plurality (in this case 2) of SiN cores (38) and finally coupled to the core (33) where the light exits (with a smaller spot size, hence acting as a spot size converter. The optical coupling between the SiN cores (38) and single crystal Si core (33) is optimized in this patent application by optimizing the in-plane taper of both the cores (38) and (33) and the relative position of those, as can be seen in figure 6C.

    [0010] European patent application EP 2 685 297 discloses a process for manufactoring a photonic circuit (400) comprising a bonding step which is required to optically couple the Silicon waveguide layer to the SiN waveguide 104, which at the moment of bonding is covered by a "non-conformal" planarizing oxide 104 formed by a deposition and chemical mechanical polishing. The result is a non-conformal dielectric which is not considered homogenous due to the bonding interface.

    [0011] There is a need to improve further the uniformity of the optical coupling through the inter-waveguide cladding.

    Summary



    [0012] The aim of the present disclosure is to provide integrated semiconductor photonic devices and methods that offer good variability and uniformity in the optical coupling, between a dielectric waveguide core and a crystalline semiconductor layer of the device, e.g. improved variability and uniformity in the optical outcoupling over the prior art. It is an advantage of embodiments of the present disclosure that improved variability and high uniformity is obtained in the optical coupling through a first dielectric layer in between an annealed dielectric waveguide core and a region of a mono crystalline semiconductor layer suitable for supporting an optical mode, the coupling uniformity and improved variability is obtained on both small (single device) scale and large (wafer) scale.

    [0013] It is an advantage of embodiments of the present disclosure that an improved variability and high uniform optical coupling is achieved, on a small scale being the scale of a single integrated photonics device, this results in accurately controlled optical coupling between the dielectric waveguide core and the mono crystalline semiconductor of the single integrated photonics device.

    [0014] It is an advantage of the embodiments of the present disclosure that a low variability and high uniform optical coupling is achieved, on a large scale being for instance between all identical optical devices selected from a single or multiple wafers, this results in an optical design window that can be enlarged, thus enabling higher optical performance and or higher optical yield in a volume production line.

    [0015] It is an advantage of the embodiments of the present disclosure that the thickness of the first dielectric layer can be controlled independently and is not depending on a thickness of an existing layer, as is the case in international patent application WO2014/047443.

    [0016] It is an advantage of the embodiments of the present disclosure that the first dielectric layer is a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer, and has a uniform thickness and composition in any location in the first dielectric layer.

    [0017] In a first aspect the present disclosure relates to a method for fabricating an integrated semiconductor photonics device according to claim 1.

    [0018] It is an advantage of the embodiments of the present disclosure that the first dielectric layer is a homogenous and conformal layer, resulting in improved control of the optical coupling and increased design window.

    [0019] According to some embodiments of the disclosure, the method further comprises: annealing the second dielectric layer thereby driving hydrogen out of the second dielectric layer.

    [0020] It is an advantage of some embodiments that the second dielectric is annealed, thereby driving hydrogen out of the second dielectric and improving the propagation loss of an optical mode propagating in the dielectric waveguide.

    [0021] According to some embodiments of the disclosure, the method further comprises:
    • providing a second substrate having a third dielectric layer on a main surface of the second substrate, and;
    • attaching the second substrate to the first substrate by attaching the third dielectric layer to the second dielectric layer at an attaching interface, thereafter;
    • exposing the mono crystalline semiconductor layer, by removing the first substrate, and;
    • after said annealing, forming an optical component in the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer.


    [0022] It is an advantage of some embodiments of the present disclosure that the mono crystalline semiconductor layer can be used for forming optical devices after the anneal step, whilst assuring mechanical stability of the integrated photonics device by a second substrate.

    [0023] According to some embodiments of the method of the disclosure forming the optical component comprises, forming a semiconductor waveguide core in a second region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer, wherein the second region comprises at least part of the first region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer.

    [0024] It is an advantage of some embodiments of the present disclosure that a semiconductor waveguide core can be optically coupled to an annealed dielectric waveguide core, having improved control over the optical coupling between them.

    [0025] According to some embodiments of the method of the disclosure forming the optical component includes doping part of the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer.

    [0026] It is an advantage of some embodiments of the present disclosure that active components can be integrated in the mono crystalline semiconductor layer, after the dielectric waveguide core is annealed.

    [0027] According to some embodiments of the disclosure the second substrate is a wafer comprising a plurality of said integrated semiconductor photonics devices, the method further comprising after the formation of the optical component, singulating the wafer into a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor photonics devices.

    [0028] It is an advantage of some embodiments of the present disclosure that a plurality of identical integrated photonics devices can be obtained that have good variability in the optical coupling between the semiconductor waveguide core and the annealed dielectric waveguide core, e.g. improved variability in the optical coupling compared to the prior art.

    [0029] According to some embodiments of the method of the disclosure forming the dielectric waveguide core comprises:
    • depositing a dielectric waveguide layer on the first dielectric layer,
    • patterning the dielectric waveguide layer to form the dielectric waveguide core.


    [0030] According to some embodiments of the method of the disclosure the first and second dielectric layers having a refractive index lower than the refractive index of the dielectric waveguide core.

    [0031] According to some embodiments of the method of the present disclosure forming the first dielectric layer comprises thermally growing an oxide from the mono crystalline semiconductor layer.

    [0032] In a second aspect the disclosure relates to an integrated semiconductor photonics device according to claim 9.

    [0033] It is an advantage of the embodiments of the present disclosure that the integrated photonics device has a first dielectric layer with a homogenous structure and is conformal in thickness. This results in improved variability in the coupling coefficient of the obtained integrated photonics device.

    [0034] According to some embodiments of the present disclosure the integrated semiconductor photonics device further comprises a first substrate whereon the mono crystalline semiconductor layer is contacted.

    [0035] According to some embodiments of the present disclosure the integrated semiconductor photonics device further comprises a second substrate with a third dielectric layer formed thereon, whereby the third dielectric layer is attached to the second dielectric layer at an attaching interface.

    [0036] According to some embodiments of the present disclosure the integrated semiconductor photonics device comprises a semiconductor waveguide core in a second region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer wherein the second region comprises at least part of the first region.

    [0037] It is an advantage of some embodiments of the present disclosure that a mono crystalline semiconductor layer is optically coupled to a low propagation loss dielectric waveguide core with improved control of the optical coupling.

    [0038] In a third aspect the disclosure relates to an integrated semiconductor wafer comprising a plurality of identical photonics devices fabricated simultaneously according to embodiments of the first aspect of the disclosure.

    [0039] It is an advantage of embodiments of the third aspect of the present disclosure that for a plurality of integrated photonics devices obtained from a single integrated semiconductor wafer, each optical photonics device has improved control of the optical coupling, resulting in a low variability, e.g. lower compared to the prior art, of the optical coupling between all devices of the single integrated semiconductor wafer. This increases the optical design window, yielding better performing devices or increases the wafer yield when the design window is not enlarged.

    Brief description of the figures



    [0040] 

    FIG 1A-D illustrates steps of a method for fabricating integrated semiconductor photonics device according to some embodiments of the present disclosure.

    FIG 2A-2D illustrates a set of cross-sectional views, of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device, at different steps of the method according to an embodiment of the present disclosure.

    FIG 3A-3C illustrates a set of cross-sectional views, of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device, at different steps of the method according to further embodiments of the present disclosure.

    FIG 4 illustrates a cross sectional view of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device according to an embodiment of the disclosure.

    FIG 5 illustrates a cross sectional view of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device according to a further embodiment of the disclosure.

    FIG 6 illustrates a cross sectional view of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device according to a further embodiment of the disclosure.

    FIG 7 illustrates a cross sectional view of a portion of the integrated semiconductor photonics device according to a further embodiment of the disclosure.

    FIG 8 illustrates a plane view of the integrated semiconductor photonics device according to an embodiment of the disclosure.


    Detailed description



    [0041] The present disclosure will be described with respect to particular embodiments and with reference to certain drawings but the disclosure is not limited thereto. The drawings described are only schematic and are non-limiting. In the drawings, the size of some of the elements may be exaggerated and not drawn on scale for illustrative purposes. The dimensions and the relative dimensions do not correspond to actual reductions to practice of the disclosure.

    [0042] Furthermore, the terms first, second and the like in the description, are used for distinguishing between similar elements and not necessarily for describing a sequence, either temporally, spatially, in ranking or in any other manner. It is to be understood that the terms so used are interchangeable under appropriate circumstances and that the embodiments of the disclosure described herein are capable of operation in other sequences than described or illustrated herein.

    [0043] Moreover, the terms top, under and the like in the description are used for descriptive purposes and not necessarily for describing relative positions. It is to be understood that the terms so used are interchangeable under appropriate circumstances and that the embodiments of the disclosure described herein are capable of operation in other orientations than described or illustrated herein.

    [0044] It is to be noticed that the term "comprising", used in the claims, should not be interpreted as being restricted to the means listed thereafter; it does not exclude other elements or steps. It is thus to be interpreted as specifying the presence of the stated features, integers, steps or components as referred to, but does not preclude the presence or addition of one or more other features, integers, steps or components, or groups thereof. Thus, the scope of the expression "a device comprising means A and B" should not be limited to devices consisting only of components A and B. It means that with respect to the present invention, the only relevant components of the device are A and B.

    [0045] Reference throughout this specification to "one embodiment" or "an embodiment" means that a particular feature, structure or characteristic described in connection with the embodiment is included in at least one embodiment of the present invention. Thus, appearances of the phrases "in one embodiment" or "in an embodiment" in various places throughout this specification are not necessarily all referring to the same embodiment, but may. Furthermore, the particular features, structures or characteristics may be combined in any suitable manner, as would be apparent to one of ordinary skill in the art from this disclosure, in one or more embodiments.

    [0046] Similarly it should be appreciated that in the description of exemplary embodiments of the invention, various features of the invention are sometimes grouped together in a single embodiment, figure, or description thereof for the purpose of streamlining the disclosure and aiding in the understanding of one or more of the various inventive aspects. This method of disclosure, however, is not to be interpreted as reflecting an intention that the claimed invention requires more features than are expressly recited in each claim. Rather, as the following claims reflect, inventive aspects lie in less than all features of a single foregoing disclosed embodiment. Thus, the claims following the detailed description are hereby expressly incorporated into this detailed description, with each claim standing on its own as a separate embodiment of this invention.

    [0047] Furthermore, while some embodiments described herein include some but not other features included in other embodiments, combinations of features of different embodiments are meant to be within the scope of the invention, and form different embodiments, as would be understood by those in the art. For example, in the following claims, any of the claimed embodiments can be used in any combination.

    [0048] In the description provided herein, numerous specific details are set forth. However, it is understood that embodiments of the invention may be practiced without these specific details. In other instances, well-known methods, structures and techniques have not been shown in detail in order not to obscure an understanding of this description.

    [0049] In a first aspect, the present disclosure relates to a method 90 for fabricating an integrated semiconductor photonics device according to embodiments of the current disclosure, as illustrated in FIG 1A. Cross sectional views of a portion of the obtained device at different steps of the method are illustrated in FIG 2A-D.

    [0050] The first step 10 of the method 90 is providing a first substrate 110 having a mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130.

    [0051] FIG 2A depicts a schematic representation of a cross-sectional view of a portion of the first substrate 110 having on top a mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130.

    [0052] The first substrate 110 can be a semiconductor substrate, for instance a silicon substrate, suitable for the use with planar semiconductor integration technologies. Other materials suitable for the first substrate 110, but not limited to are: glass, fused silica, germanium, silicon germanium, or other compound semiconductor materials. In some embodiments the first substrate 110 is sacrificial and can be removed. The first substrate 110 can include a means to remove the first substrate 110 from the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. The means to remove can be for example an ion implanted layer suitable for releasing the first substrate 110 as in a smart cut process. The means to remove can be a buried oxide layer (BOX-layer) as part of a semiconductor on insulator (SOI) substrate used as first substrate 110. The means to remove can be an etch stop layer to selectively etch away the first substrate 110. The BOX layer can be used as an etch stop layer for the first substrate 110, a second etch is then required to remove the BOX layer using the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 as etch stop layer.

    [0053] The first substrate 110 has a main surface 111, the main surface 111 has a mono crystalline semiconductor 130 layer on top. The mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 can be mono crystalline silicon with a typical thickness between 0.2 µm and 1.0 µm. The mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 can be any mono crystalline semiconductor layer suitable for guiding an optical signal or supporting an optical mode. This mono crystalline semiconductor layer includes, but is not limited, to silicon, other semiconductor materials, compound semiconductors, silicon compounds and germanium.

    [0054] It is advantageous to embodiments of the present disclosure that the planarity of the main surface 111 of the first substrate 110 is very well controlled, to achieve a first substrate 110 that has a main planar surface. The planarity of a surface is defined as the maximum deviation, between any two points of that surface, from an ideal two dimensional plane in a direction perpendicular to that plane, it is a measure for the absolute flatness of a surface.

    [0055] It is advantageous to the embodiments of the present disclosure that the planarity of upper main surface 131 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is well controlled, due to the conformal first dielectric layer 140. The skilled person in the art can achieve a planarity on wafer scale below 3nm on a full 300mm SOI wafer used as a first substrate. For example: a blanket silicon SOI wafer.

    [0056] It is advantageous to the embodiments of the present disclosure that the first substrate 110 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 have a controlled surface roughness, this is the local variation in planarity and cannot be never larger than the planarity. The surface roughness is typically 30x better controlled than the planarity and is typically below 0.1nm, for example on any selected 0.1mm2 area corresponding to the local scale or device scale, of a 300mm SOI wafer used as a first substrate.

    [0057] The mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is provided with a planar and essentially flat surface and has a low surface roughness at local scale which is the scale of the optical device according to the embodiments of the disclosure, for example <0.1nm for a 300mm silicon SOI wafer used as a first substrate 110.

    [0058] After the first substrate 110 is provided according to step 10 of the method 90, a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer 140 according to step 20 of the method 90 is formed.

    [0059] A homogenous layer is defined as a single layer that has essentially equal composition and equal properties at different locations of the layer. It is a uniform layer that has essentially the same structure, composition and properties in any location throughout the layer. A homogeneous layer does not have any structural interfaces within the layer. Structural interfaces can be for example explicitly designed interfaces suitable for joining two parts of the same substance into a single part. The homogenous layer is advantageously fabricated in a single process step.

    [0060] A conformal layer is defined as a layer having a constant thickness. The upper surface of the conformal layer having the same topography as the lower surface where it is formed on.

    [0061] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure, forming the first dielectric layer 140 comprises thermally growing an oxide from the mono crystalline semiconductor layer. The first dielectric layer 140 can be a semiconductor oxide, for example formed by thermally oxidizing the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. In this case, part of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 will be consumed by the formation of the first dielectric layer 140. The remaining part of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 in the following steps. The formed oxide is the first dielectric layer 140. The thickness and conformality of the thermally grown oxide is known in the art to be very well and precisely controlled. For example, a thickness variation below 0.75nm for a 50nm thick oxide on a full 300mm SOI wafer and below 0.075nm on any 0.1mm2 area of the 300mm SOI wafer. Other techniques yielding a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer 140 may be employed.

    [0062] FIG 2B illustrates a schematic representation of a cross-sectional view of the first dielectric layer 140 being a conformal layer and having a planar upper main surface and a planar lower main surfaces with uniform thickness that is advantageously formed in a single process step on the planar main surface of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130.

    [0063] After the formation of the first dielectric layer 140, step 30 of the method 90 is performed, providing a dielectric waveguide core 150. The dielectric waveguide core 150 is provided on top of and in direct contact with the upper main surface of the first dielectric layer 140.

    [0064] The dielectric waveguide core 150 is a wave guide core comprising a dielectric material, for example Si3N4, the stoichiometric form of silicon nitride. Other dielectric materials can be used such as for example doped or undoped semiconductor oxides, silicon nitrides, silicon oxynitrides, silicon carbides, silicon germanium, hafnium oxide, aluminium oxide, silica and others. The thickness of the dielectric waveguide core 150 can be between 20 nm and 1 micrometer, a typical value is 400nm.

    [0065] The dielectric waveguide core 150 is suitable for supporting an optical mode and can carry an optical signal, this optical signal is evanescently coupled to a first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 through the first dielectric layer 140. The first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is a region in close proximity of the dielectric waveguide core 150 and enables optical coupling of the optical evanescent wave between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. The close proximity is achieved by the first dielectric layer 140 in between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 being sufficiently thin. The first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer is that region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 that provides sufficient optical coupling between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 through the first dielectric layer 140. It will be obvious that the first region 156 advantageously comprises at least the intersecting, or perpendicular projected part, of the dielectric waveguide core 150 in a plane equal to the upper main surface 131 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 to achieve good optical coupling. The first region 156 comprises at least the part directly underneath the dielectric waveguide core 150.

    [0066] The evanescent coupling has an exponential decay with the thickness of the first dielectric layer 140. Controlling the conformality and providing a homogenous first dielectric layer 140, according to embodiments of the current disclosure, in the region where the integrated semiconductor photonics device is to be formed will result in improved control of the optical coupling. The region where the integrated semiconductor photonics device is to be formed, is the first region 156 and the second region 136, is on a local scale and smaller than 0.1mm2. The planarity of the monocrystalline layer 130 is very well controlled as stated before. Better control of the optical coupling results in a larger design window for the optical designers and or in an increased yield during manufacturing of optical devices according to the embodiments of the present disclosure because of the improved variability of the coupling coefficient.

    [0067] FIG 2C illustrates a schematic representation of a cross-sectional view of the dielectric waveguide core 150 on top of and in direct contact with first dielectric layer 140. It should be noted that the dielectric waveguide core 150 is not a layer but has a shape designed to carry an optical mode, for instance an optical wave propagating in a direction perpendicular to the cross section of FIG 2C.

    [0068] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure, forming the dielectric waveguide core 150 comprises depositing a dielectric waveguide layer on top and in direct contact with the first dielectric layer 140 and further patterning the dielectric waveguide layer to form the dielectric waveguide core 150. The techniques for deposition, patterning and forming are well known in the art of integrated photonics and will not be detailed.

    [0069] After providing the dielectric waveguide core 150, step 40 of the method 90 is performed, i.e. depositing a second dielectric layer 160 on the dielectric waveguide core 150. The second dielectric 160 thereby is covering the dielectric waveguide core 150.

    [0070] The second dielectric layer 160 can be a semiconductor oxide for example deposited silicon oxide (SiO2). Other materials or techniques may be used to deposit the second dielectric layer 160 like, but not limited to: spin-on glass, PE-CVD dielectrics, glasses, silicon oxynitrides.

    [0071] FIG 2D illustrates a schematic representation of a cross-sectional view of the obtained structure after the second dielectric layer 160 is deposited. It should be noted that the first dielectric layer 140 and second dielectric layer 160 are part of the waveguide cladding of the dielectric waveguide core 150 and together the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the waveguide cladding form a dielectric waveguide suitable for supporting an optical mode.

    [0072] The method 90 further comprises a step 50, annealing the dielectric waveguide core, thereby driving hydrogen out of the dielectric waveguide core 150. The dielectric waveguide core 150 has a high hydrogen concentration due to its manufacturing, this is a known problem and causes optical propagation loss for an optical mode propagating through the dielectric waveguide. The anneal step 50 is performed at temperatures above 950 degrees Celsius and for at least 1 hour, thereby driving hydrogen out and densifying the dielectric waveguide core 150. It should be noted that a residue of hydrogen may remain present in the dielectric waveguide core 150. If the residue is small, it will have limited effect on the propagation loss in the dielectric waveguide.

    [0073] The anneal step 50 may be performed before depositing a second dielectric according to method 91 illustrated in FIG 1B. The anneal step 50 results in driving out hydrogen of the dielectric waveguide core 150 and giving the dielectric waveguide core 150 a low optical propagation loss. The low optical propagation loss is an optical propagation loss of the waveguide including waveguide core and waveguide cladding, below 1dB/centimetre, or even below 0.1dB/centimetre.

    [0074] According to the method 92, illustrated in FIG 1C, the method further comprises an anneal step 51, annealing the second dielectric layer 160 thereby driving hydrogen out of the second dielectric layer 160. The anneal step 51 is performed at temperatures above 950 degrees Celsius and for at least 1 hour.

    [0075] According to the method 93, illustrated in FIG ID, the annealing of the dielectric waveguide core is combined with the annealing of the second dielectric in an anneal step 53, thereby driving hydrogen out of the second dielectric layer 160. The anneal step 53 is performed at temperatures above 950 degrees Celsius and for at least 1 hour.

    [0076] In order to respect the thermal budget of electronic and photonic devices the anneal steps 50, 51 and 53 are performed prior to any doping step used to form for instance active devices or any metallization step used to form interconnect structures. It is an advantage of embodiments of the present disclosure that no active devices and metallization are present at the moment the anneal step 50, 51, 53 is performed, as the active devices and metallization may be introduced afterwards. The active devices can be optical and/or logical.

    [0077] In the current embodiments of the disclosure it is understood that the second dielectric layer 160 is advantageously deposited in a single step. It will be clear that if more deposition steps are performed to obtain the second dielectric layer 160, each deposition step can be followed by an anneal step. The anneal step performed on the second dielectric layer 160 which acts as a waveguide cladding for the dielectric waveguide core 150, further improves the optical propagation loss of an optical mode propagating in the dielectric waveguide.

    [0078] The deposition step 40 introduces impurities in the second dielectric layer 160, these impurities like hydrogen, may be driven out with an anneal steps 51, 53 as defined earlier, thereby driving hydrogen out of the dielectric waveguide.

    [0079] It should be noted that methods 91, 92 and 93 are all variations of method 90, all of three variants being envisaged within embodiments according to the first aspect of the present disclosure.

    [0080] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method wherein the first and second dielectric layers have a refractive index lower than the refractive index of the waveguide core. This is a condition for forming a waveguide with the dielectric waveguide core 150 as the core of the waveguide propagating the optical mode, the first and second dielectric layers acting as a waveguide cladding surrounding the dielectric waveguide core 150. The waveguide cladding causes the optical mode to be confined to the waveguide core. Confinement can be total or partial as is known in the art.

    [0081] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method further comprises providing a second substrate 210 having a third dielectric layer 220 on a main surface of the second substrate 210. This second substrate 210 serves as mechanical support in some of the further embodiments of the present disclosure. The second substrate 210 may be a semiconductor substrate, for instance a silicon substrate suitable for the use with planar semiconductor integration technologies. Other materials suitable for the second substrate 210, the second substrate material not being limited thereto, are glass, fused silica, germanium, silicon germanium, or other compound semiconductor materials. The third dielectric layer 220 material is a dielectric material and may for example be a semiconductor oxide such as for example formed by thermal oxidation, or a semiconductor oxide for example deposited silicon oxide (SiO2). Other materials or techniques may be used to deposit the third dielectric layer 220 like, but not limited to: spin-on glass, PE-CVD dielectrics, glasses, silicon oxynitrides.

    [0082] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method further comprises attaching the second substrate 210 to the first substrate 110 by attaching the third dielectric layer 220 to the second dielectric layer 160 at an attaching interface 310 as illustrated in FIG 3A. It will be clear to the skilled person that the main surfaces of the third and second dielectric layers need sufficient low planarity and limited surface roughness to achieve an attachment. Any impurities introduced in creating these planar surfaces on the second and third dielectric layers at the attaching interface 310, can be removed by annealing, as known in the art. An additional annealing on the second substrate 210 after the planarization of the third dielectric layer 220 may be required prior to attaching. Different techniques may be used for attaching the third dielectric layer 220 to the second dielectric layer 160, like but not limited to, applying an adhesive layer or direct oxide-oxide bonding.

    [0083] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the first, second and third dielectric layers have a refractive index lower than the refractive index of the waveguide core 150. This condition is a condition for forming a waveguide with the dielectric waveguide core 150 as the core of the waveguide propagating the optical mode, the first, second and third dielectric layer acting as a waveguide cladding surrounding the dielectric waveguide core 150.

    [0084] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method further comprises exposing the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 by removing the first substrate 110, FIG 3B shows a cross-sectional views, of a portion of the obtained integrated semiconductor photonics device after this step in the method. This exposing can be achieved by the means to be removed in the first substrate 110, as previously disclosed. Removal of the first substrate 110 may be accomplished by etching, for example by multiple etching steps using multiple etch recipes to remove the first substrate 110 and eventual oxide layers it may contain selectively, to expose the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130, the etching is assisted by the means to remove which may be an etch stop layer enabling selective etching at different etch rates.

    [0085] When using SOI substrates or SOI wafers as first substrate 110 having a mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 suitable for supporting an optical mode, the first dielectric layer 140 can be formed by thermal oxidation as previously disclosed in the present disclosure. The SOI substrate or SOI wafer can further contain a BOX layer in between the first substrate 110 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 that can act as an etch stop layer for the first substrate 110 in the removing of the first substrate 110. Removing the BOX layer itself for exposing the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 requires for example a dedicated etching step that uses the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 as stopping layer.

    [0086] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method further comprises, after said annealing, forming an optical component in the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130, FIG 3C shows a cross-sectional views, of a portion of the obtained integrated semiconductor photonics device after this step in the method. The exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 may be patterned and etched to define and form optical components like but not limited to: gratings, semiconductor waveguides, power splitter, power combiner, optical modulator.

    [0087] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure, forming an optical component comprises forming a semiconductor waveguide core 135 in a second region 136 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130, the second region 136 comprising at least part of the first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. This embodiment enables a method for fabricating an optical evanescently coupled and annealed dielectric waveguide core 150, coupled to a semiconductor waveguide core 135. The optical component is formed in the second region 136 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 which comprises at least part of the first region 156, which is optically coupled to the dielectric waveguide core 150 by evanescent coupling through the first dielectric layer 140. An optical coupling is realized in the region where the first and second region overlap, i.e. the coupling is realized between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the semiconductor waveguide core 135. FIG 8 illustrates a plane view of an examplary integrated semiconductor photonics device indicating the first region 156 and the second region 136, the semiconductor waveguide core 135 and the dielectric waveguide core 150. It should be noted that FIG 8 is an example and other variations are possible.

    [0088] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure, forming the optical component includes doping part of the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer. This embodiment enables the use of active optical devices like PN junctions or PIN junctions, detectors, modulators, attenuators and others. Doping is a known process in the integrated photonics art and will not be explained in detail.

    [0089] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the method further comprises a singulation step after the formation of the optical component for obtaining a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor devices. The singulation can be executed when the second substrate is for example a wafer comprising a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor devices. The singulation step may be a dicing step using a saw, laser or another suitable technique. From a single substrate a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor devices is obtained by the embodiment of the method. Identical devices are a plurality of the same optical device, based on a single design pattern, fabricated according to the method of the present disclosure. The single design pattern is repeated on different locations of the substrate main surface to obtain a multitude of identical optical devices on the substrate. The singulation step is used to single out a set of these identical optical devices.

    [0090] In a second aspect the present disclosure relates to an integrated semiconductor photonics device comprising:
    • a planar mono crystalline semiconductor layer;
    • a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer formed on the mono crystalline semiconductor layer;
    • a dielectric waveguide core formed on the first dielectric layer adapted to optically couple to a first region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer through the first dielectric layer;
    • a second dielectric layer adapted to cover the dielectric waveguide core, and;
    wherein the hydrogen content of at least the dielectric waveguide core is selected to have a waveguide with a propagation loss less than 1dB per centimetre.
    FIG 4 shows a cross-sectional view, of a portion of an examplary integrated semiconductor photonics device.

    [0091] The planar mono crystalline semiconductor layer may have a typical thickness between 0.2 µm and 1.0 µm. The mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 can be for example mono crystalline silicon or any mono crystalline semiconductor layer suitable for guiding an optical signal or supporting an optical mode, this includes but is not limited to compound semiconductors, silicon compounds, and germanium. The mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 may have a main planar surface with a planarity typically below 3nm for a 300mm wafer as a substrate and preferably below 0.1nm on device scale, device scale is in the order of 10 µm to 333 µm. The main planar surface may be essentially a flat surface, having a low surface roughness below 0.1nm in any 0.1mm2 area of the planar surface.

    [0092] A homogenous layer is defined as a single layer being advantageously fabricated in a single process step and having essentially equal composition and equal properties in different locations of the layer. It is a uniform layer having essentially the same structure, composition and properties in any location of the layer. The homogeneous layer is not having any structural interfaces within the layer. Structural interfaces can be for example explicitly designed interfaces suitable for joining two parts of the same substance into a single part. The conformal layer is defined as a layer having a constant thickness. The upper surface of the conformal layer having the same topography as the lower surface where it is formed on. The first dielectric layer 140 can be a semiconductor oxide for example silicon oxide, or germanium oxide.

    [0093] The dielectric waveguide core 150 may be a waveguide core comprising dielectric material, for example Si3N4, the stoichiometric form of silicon nitride. Other dielectric materials can be used and comprise: doped or undoped semiconductor oxides, silicon nitrides, silicon oxynitrides, silicon carbides, silicon germanium, hafnium oxide, aluminium oxide, silica and others. The thickness of the dielectric waveguide core 150 can be between 20 nm and 1 µm, a typical value is 400nm. The dielectric waveguide core 150 may be suitable for supporting an optical mode and can carry an optical signal, the dielectric waveguide core 150 may be adapted to optically couple to a first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer through the first dielectric layer 140 by evanescently coupling of the optical signal between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. It must be noted that the optical coupling is bi-directional. The first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 may be a region in close proximity of the dielectric waveguide core 150 and enables optical coupling of the optical evanescent wave between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. The close proximity may be achieved by the first dielectric layer 140 in between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 being sufficiently thin. The close proximity is further achieved by selecting a first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 so as to provide sufficient optical coupling as required by the application. The first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer may be that region of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 that provides sufficient optical coupling between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 through the first dielectric layer 140. It will be obvious that the first region 156 advantageously comprises at least the intersecting, or perpendicular projected part, of the dielectric waveguide core 150 in a plane equal to the upper main surface 131 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 to achieve good optical coupling. The first region 156 may comprise at least the part directly underneath the dielectric waveguide core 150.
    The evanescent coupling has an exponential decay with the thickness of the first dielectric layer 140. Controlling the conformality and providing a homogenous first dielectric layer 140, according to embodiments of the current disclosure, in the region where the integrated semiconductor photonics device is to be formed will result in improved control of the optical coupling. The region where the integrated semiconductor photonics device is to be formed, may be the first region 156 and the second region 136, may be on a local scale and smaller than 0.1mm2. The planarity of the monocrystalline layer 130 can be very well controlled as stated before. Better control of the optical coupling results in a larger design window for the optical designers and or in an increased yield during manufacturing of optical devices according to the embodiments of the present disclosure because of the improved variability of the coupling coefficient.

    [0094] The dielectric waveguide core may be an annealed dielectric waveguide core, which is adapted so that hydrogen is driven out of it. The annealed dielectric waveguide core may have a low optical propagation loss. The low optical propagation loss may be an optical propagation loss for an optical mode propagating in the waveguide below 1dB/cm, or even below 0.1dB/cm. Alternatively the dielectric waveguide core and the second dielectric are an annealed dielectric waveguide core and an annealed second dielectric, and are adapted so that hydrogen is driven out of them. The annealed dielectric waveguide has low optical propagation loss. The low optical propagation loss may be an optical propagation loss below 1dB/centimetre, or even below 0.1dB/centimetre. The annealed second dielectric layer 160 may offer a further improvement in the propagation loss in the dielectric. It should be noted that the propagation loss is for a waveguide, containing a waveguide core and a waveguide cladding. The waveguide cladding is the first and second dielectric.

    [0095] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the integrated photonics device further comprises a first substrate 110 whereon the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is contacted. FIG 5 shows a cross-sectional views, of a portion of an examplary integrated semiconductor photonics device. The first substrate 110 may have a main surface 111 in direct contact, at a contacting interface 116, with a surface opposite to the upper main planar surface 131 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. The opposite surface has a planar surface provided the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 is a conformal layer. The first substrate 110 may be for example a SOI, then the contacting interface 116 is the boundary between the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 and the BOX layer 115 of the SOI which is the first substrate 110. The first substrate 110 can comprise a semiconductor substrate, for example a silicon substrate suitable for the use with planar semiconductor integration technologies. Other materials suitable for the substrate, but not limited to are: glass, fused silica, germanium, silicon germanium, or other compound semiconductor materials. The first substrate 110 may be a sacrificial substrate and suitable for providing mechanical support during handling of the integrated photonics device.

    [0096] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the integrated photonics device further comprises a second substrate 210 with a third dielectric layer 220 formed thereon, whereby the third dielectric layer is attached to the second dielectric layer at an attaching interface. FIG 6 shows a cross-sectional views, of a portion of a related integrated semiconductor photonics device. The second substrate 210 may serve as mechanical support in further embodiments of the present disclosure, for example when the first substrate 110 is a sacrificial substrate and is removed to expose the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. The second substrate 210 can be a semiconductor substrate, for example a silicon substrate suitable for the use with planar semiconductor integration technologies. Other materials suitable for the second substrate 210, but not limited to are: glass, fused silica, germanium, silicon germanium, or other compound semiconductor materials. The third dielectric layer 220 material being a dielectric material can be a semiconductor oxide for example formed by thermally oxidizing or can be a semiconductor oxide for example deposited silicon oxide (SiO2). Other materials or techniques may be used to deposit the third dielectric layer 220 like, but not limited to: spin-on glass, PE-CVD dielectrics, glasses, silicon oxynitrides. Attaching the second substrate to the first substrate by attaching the third dielectric layer 220 to the second dielectric layer 160 at an attaching interface 310. It will be clear to the skilled person that the main surfaces of the third and second dielectric layers need sufficient planarity and limited surface roughness to achieve an adequate attachment. Different techniques may be used for attaching the third dielectric layer 220 to the second dielectric layer 160, like but not limited to, an adhesive layer or direct oxide-oxide bonding.

    [0097] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the integrated photonics device further comprises a third dielectric layer 220 adapted so that hydrogen is driven out of it. The annealed third dielectric layer offers a further improvement in the propagation loss.

    [0098] According to an embodiment of the present disclosure the integrated photonics device further comprises a mono crystalline semiconductor optical waveguide core 135 in a second region 136 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 wherein the second region 136 comprises at least part of the first region 156 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130. FIG 7 shows a cross-sectional view, of a portion of an examplary integrated semiconductor photonics device. This embodiment relates to an integrated photonics device comprising an annealed dielectric waveguide core 150 evanescently coupled to a semiconductor waveguide core 135. As the semiconductor optical waveguide core 135 is formed in the second region 136 of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130 which comprises at least part of the first region 156, which is optically coupled to the dielectric waveguide core 150 by evanescent coupling through the first dielectric layer 140, an optical coupling is realized in the region where the first and second region overlap, the coupling is between the dielectric waveguide core 150 and the semiconductor waveguide core 135.

    [0099] Further optical devices may be present in the mono crystalline semiconductor layer 130, these include but are not limited to: waveguides, gratings, couplers, detectors and modulators.

    [0100] In a third aspect the present disclosure relates to an integrated semiconductor wafer comprising a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor photonics devices fabricated according to embodiments of the first aspect of the disclosure.


    Claims

    1. A method for fabricating an integrated semiconductor photonics device, the method comprising:

    - providing a first substrate (110) having on top a planar mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130) suitable for supporting an optical mode;

    - forming a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer (140) on a planar upper main surface (131) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130);

    - providing a dielectric waveguide core (150) on top of and in direct contact with the upper main surface of the first dielectric layer (140), such that for any point on the lower surface of the waveguide core (150) the stack perpendicularly underneath it comprises the conformal first dielectric layer (140), the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130), and the first substrate (110); the dielectric waveguide core (150) furthermore being optically coupled to a first region (156) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130) through the first dielectric layer (140);

    - depositing a second dielectric layer (160) on the dielectric waveguide core (150) thereby covering the dielectric waveguide core (150),

    - annealing the dielectric waveguide core (150) thereby driving hydrogen out of the dielectric waveguide core (150).


     
    2. The method according to any of the preceding claims, further comprising: annealing the second dielectric layer (160) thereby driving hydrogen out of the second dielectric layer (160).
     
    3. The method according to any of the preceding claims, further comprising:

    - providing a second substrate (210) having a third dielectric layer (220) on a main surface of the second substrate (210), and;

    - attaching the second substrate to the first substrate by attaching the third dielectric layer (220) to the second dielectric layer (160) at an attaching interface (310), thereafter;

    - exposing the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130), by removing the first substrate (110), and;

    - after said annealing, forming an optical component in the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer.


     
    4. The method according to claim 3, where forming the optical component comprises:

    - forming a semiconductor waveguide core (135) in a second region (136) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130), wherein the second region (136) comprises at least part of the first region (156) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130).


     
    5. The method according to claim 3 and 4, wherein forming the optical component includes doping part of the exposed mono crystalline semiconductor layer.
     
    6. The method according to claims 3 to 5, wherein the second substrate (210) is a wafer comprising a plurality of said integrated semiconductor photonics devices, the method further comprising after the formation of the optical component, singulating the wafer into a plurality of identical integrated semiconductor photonics devices.
     
    7. The method according to any of the foregoing claims wherein, forming the dielectric waveguide core (150) comprises:

    - depositing a dielectric waveguide layer on the first dielectric layer (140), and;

    - patterning the dielectric waveguide layer to form the dielectric waveguide core (150).


     
    8. The method according to any of the preceding claims, wherein forming the first dielectric layer (140) comprises thermally growing an oxide from the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130).
     
    9. An integrated semiconductor photonics device comprising:

    - a planar mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130);

    - a homogenous and conformal first dielectric layer (140) formed on the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130);

    - a dielectric waveguide core (150) formed on top of and in direct contact with the upper main surface of the first dielectric layer (140)such that for any point on the lower surface of the waveguide core (150) the stack perpendicularly underneath it comprises the conformal first dielectric layer (140) and the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130), the dielectric waveguide core (150) adapted to optically couple to a first region (156) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130) through the first dielectric layer (140);
    and wherein the hydrogen content of at least the dielectric waveguide core (150) is selected to have a waveguide with a propagation loss less than 1dB per centimetre,

    - a second dielectric layer (160) adapted to cover the dielectric waveguide core (150).


     
    10. An integrated semiconductor photonics device according to claim 9, further comprising a first substrate (110) whereon the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130) is contacted.
     
    11. An integrated semiconductor photonics device according to claims 9 and 10, further comprising:

    - a second substrate (210) with a third dielectric layer (220) formed thereon, whereby the third dielectric layer (220) is attached to the second dielectric layer (160) at an attaching interface (310).


     
    12. An integrated semiconductor photonics device according to claim 11, comprising a semiconductor waveguide core (135) in a second region (136) of the mono crystalline semiconductor layer (130) wherein the second region (136) comprises at least part of the first region (156).
     
    13. An integrated semiconductor wafer comprising a plurality of identical photonics devices fabricated simultaneously according to method of any of the claims 1 to 8.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Verfahren zum Herstellen einer integrierten Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtung, wobei das Verfahren folgende Schritte umfasst:

    - Bereitstellen eines ersten Substrats (110), das darauf eine ebene monokristalline Halbleiterschicht (130) aufweist, die zur Unterstützung eines optischen Modus geeignet ist;

    - Bilden einer homogenen und gleichförmigen ersten dielektrischen Schicht (140) auf einer ebenen oberen Hauptfläche (131) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130);

    - Bereitstellen eines dielektrischen Wellenleiterkerns (150) auf und in direktem Kontakt mit der oberen Hauptfläche der ersten dielektrischen Schicht (140), so dass für jeden Punkt auf der unteren Oberfläche des Wellenleiterkerns (150) der Stapel rechtwinklig darunter die gleichförmige erste dielektrische Schicht (140), die monokristalline Halbleiterschicht (130) und das erste Substrat (110) umfasst; wobei der dielektrische Wellenleiterkern (150) ferner mit einer ersten Region (156) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) über die erste dielektrische Schicht (140) optisch gekoppelt ist;

    - Abscheiden einer zweiten dielektrischen Schicht (160) auf dem dielektrischen Wellenleiterkern (150), wodurch der dielektrische Wellenleiterkern (150) abgedeckt wird,

    - Tempern des dielektrischen Wellenleiterkerns (150), wodurch Wasserstoff aus dem dielektrischen Wellenleiterkern (150) ausgetrieben wird.


     
    2. Verfahren nach einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche, ferner umfassend: das Tempern der zweiten dielektrischen Schicht (160), wodurch Wasserstoff aus der zweiten dielektrischen Schicht (160) ausgetrieben wird.
     
    3. Verfahren nach einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche, ferner umfassend folgende Schritte:

    - Bereitstellen eines zweiten Substrats (210), das eine dritte dielektrische Schicht (220) auf einer Hauptfläche des zweiten Substrats (210) aufweist; und

    - Anbringen des zweiten Substrats an dem ersten Substrat durch anschließendes Anbringen der dritten dielektrischen Schicht (220) an der zweiten dielektrischen Schicht (160) an einer Anbringungsgrenzfläche (310);

    - Freilegen der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) durch Entfernen des ersten Substrats (110); und

    - nach dem Tempern, Bilden eines optischen Bauelements in der freigelegten monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht.


     
    4. Verfahren nach Anspruch 3, wobei das Bilden des optischen Bauelements Folgendes umfasst:

    - Bilden eines Halbleiter-Wellenleiterkerns (135) in einer zweiten Region (136) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130), wobei die zweite Region (136) mindestens einen Teil der ersten Region (156) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) umfasst.


     
    5. Verfahren nach Anspruch 3 und 4, wobei das Bilden des optischen Bauelements das Dotieren eines Teils der freigelegten monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht umfasst.
     
    6. Verfahren nach Anspruch 3 bis 5, wobei das zweite Substrat (210) eine Halbleiterscheibe ist, die eine Vielzahl von integrierten Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtungen umfasst, wobei das Verfahren ferner nach dem Bilden des optischen Bauelements das Vereinzeln der Halbleiterscheibe in eine Vielzahl von identischen integrierten Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtungen umfasst.
     
    7. Verfahren nach einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche, wobei das Bilden des dielektrischen Wellenleiterkerns (150) Folgendes umfasst:

    - Abscheiden einer dielektrischen Wellenleiterschicht auf der ersten dielektrischen Schicht (140); und

    - Strukturieren der dielektrischen Wellenleiterschicht, um den dielektrischen Wellenleiterkern (150) zu bilden.


     
    8. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, wobei das Bilden der ersten dielektrischen Schicht (140) das thermische Ziehen eines Oxids aus der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) umfasst.
     
    9. Integrierte Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtung, umfassend:

    - eine ebene monokristalline Halbleiterschicht (130);

    - eine homogene und gleichförmige erste dielektrische Schicht (140), die auf der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) gebildet ist;

    - einen dielektrischen Wellenleiterkern (150), der auf und in direktem Kontakt mit der oberen Hauptfläche der ersten dielektrischen Schicht (140) gebildet ist, so dass für jeden Punkt auf der unteren Oberfläche des Wellenleiterkerns (150) der Stapel rechtwinklig darunter die gleichförmige erste dielektrische Schicht (140) und die monokristalline Halbleiterschicht (130) umfasst, wobei der dielektrische Wellenleiterkern (150) geeignet ist, um mit einer ersten Region (156) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130) über die erste dielektrische Schicht (140) optisch gekoppelt zu sein;
    und wobei der Wasserstoffgehalt mindestens des dielektrischen Wellenleiterkerns (150) ausgewählt wird, um einen Wellenleiter mit einem Ausbreitungsverlust von weniger als 1 dB pro Zentimeter zu erzielen,

    - eine zweite dielektrische Schicht (160), die geeignet ist, um den dielektrischen Wellenleiterkern (150) abzudecken.


     
    10. Integrierte Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtung nach Anspruch 9, ferner umfassend ein erstes Substrat (110), auf dem die monokristalline Halbleiterschicht (130) kontaktiert ist.
     
    11. Integrierte Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtung nach Anspruch 9 und 10, ferner umfassend:

    - ein zweites Substrat (210) mit einer darauf gebildeten dritten dielektrischen Schicht (220), wodurch die dritte dielektrische Schicht (220) an der zweiten dielektrischen Schicht (160) an einer Anbringungsgrenzfläche (310) angebracht ist.


     
    12. Integrierte Halbleiter-Photonikvorrichtung nach Anspruch 11, umfassend einen Halbleiter-Wellenleiterkern (135) in einer zweiten Region (136) der monokristallinen Halbleiterschicht (130), wobei die zweite Region (136) mindestens einen Teil der ersten Region (156) umfasst.
     
    13. Integrierte Halbleiterscheibe, umfassend eine Vielzahl von identischen Photonikvorrichtungen, die gemäß dem Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 8 gleichzeitig hergestellt werden.
     


    Revendications

    1. Procédé de fabrication d'un dispositif photonique semiconducteur intégré, le procédé comprenant :

    - la fourniture d'un premier substrat (110) ayant, sur celui-ci, une couche semiconductrice monocristalline plane (130) apte à prendre en charge un mode optique ;

    - la formation d'une première couche diélectrique homogène et conforme (140) sur une surface principale supérieure plane (131) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) ;

    - la fourniture d'un cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) sur et en contact direct avec la surface principale supérieure de la première couche diélectrique (140), de sorte que, à n'importe quel point sur la surface inférieure du cœur de guide d'onde (150), la pile perpendiculairement au-dessous de celui-ci comprenne la première couche diélectrique conforme (140), la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) et le premier substrat (110) ; le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) étant en outre couplé optiquement à une première région (156) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) à travers la première couche diélectrique (140) ;

    - le dépôt d'une deuxième couche diélectrique (160) sur le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) en recouvrant de ce fait le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150),

    - le recuit du cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) en faisant de ce fait sortir l'hydrogène du cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150).


     
    2. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, comprenant en outre : le recuit de la deuxième couche diélectrique (160) en faisant de ce fait sortir l'hydrogène de la deuxième couche diélectrique (160).
     
    3. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, comprenant en outre :

    - la fourniture d'un second substrat (210) ayant une troisième couche diélectrique (220) sur une surface principale du second substrat (210), et

    - l'attachement du second substrat au premier substrat par l'attachement de la troisième couche diélectrique (220) à la deuxième couche diélectrique (160) à une interface d'attachement (310), puis

    - l'exposition de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) par l'enlèvement du premier substrat (110), et

    - après ledit recuit, la formation d'un composant optique dans la couche semiconductrice monocristalline exposée.


     
    4. Procédé selon la revendication 3, où la formation du composant optique comprend :

    - la formation d'un cœur de guide d'onde semiconducteur (135) dans une seconde région (136) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130), dans lequel la seconde région (136) comprend au moins une partie de la première région (156) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130).


     
    5. Procédé selon les revendications 3 et 4, dans lequel la formation du composant optique inclut le dopage d'une partie de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline exposée.
     
    6. Procédé selon les revendications 3 à 5, dans lequel le second substrat (210) est une plaquette comprenant une pluralité desdits dispositifs photoniques semiconducteurs intégrés, le procédé comprenant en outre, après la formation du composant optique, la singularisation de la plaquette dans une pluralité de dispositifs photoniques semiconducteurs intégrés identiques.
     
    7. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la formation du cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) comprend :

    - le dépôt d'une couche de guide d'onde diélectrique sur la première couche diélectrique (140), et

    - la structuration de la couche de guide d'onde diélectrique pour former le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150).


     
    8. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la formation de la première couche diélectrique (140) comprend la croissance thermique d'un oxyde à partir de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130).
     
    9. Dispositif photonique semiconducteur intégré comprenant :

    - une couche semiconductrice monocristalline plane (130) ;

    - une première couche diélectrique homogène et conforme (140) formée sur la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) ;

    - un cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) formé sur et en contact direct avec la surface principale supérieure de la première couche diélectrique (140) de sorte que, pour n'importe quel point sur la surface inférieure du cœur de guide d'onde (150), la pile perpendiculairement au-dessous de celui-ci comprenne la première couche diélectrique conforme (140) et la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130), le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) étant apte à se coupler optiquement à une première région (156) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) à travers la première couche diélectrique (140) ;
    et dans lequel la teneur en hydrogène d'au moins le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150) est sélectionnée pour avoir un guide d'onde avec une perte de propagation inférieure à 1 dB par centimètre,

    - une seconde couche diélectrique (160) apte à recouvrir le cœur de guide d'onde diélectrique (150).


     
    10. Dispositif photonique semiconducteur intégré selon la revendication 9, comprenant en outre un premier substrat (110) sur lequel la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130) est mise en contact.
     
    11. Dispositif photonique semiconducteur intégré selon les revendications 9 et 10, comprenant en outre :

    - un second substrat (210) avec une troisième couche diélectrique (220) formée sur celui-ci, de telle manière que la troisième couche diélectrique (220) soit attachée à la deuxième couche diélectrique (160) à une interface d'attachement (310).


     
    12. Dispositif photonique semiconducteur intégré selon la revendication 11, comprenant un cœur de guide d'onde semiconducteur (135) dans une seconde région (136) de la couche semiconductrice monocristalline (130), dans lequel la seconde région (136) comprend au moins une partie de la première région (156).
     
    13. Plaquette semi conductrice intégrée comprenant une pluralité de dispositifs photoniques identiques fabriqués simultanément selon un procédé de l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 8.
     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



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    Patent documents cited in the description