Work Packages

The project is divided into 6 work packages (WP), each coordinated by one of the partners as WP leader:

WP Title Leader
WP1 Management TUD
WP2 System requirements and transceiver specifications AIT
WP3 Optical component design and fabrication IBM
WP4 Electronic design and electro-optic integration IHP
WP5 Packaging and characterization and evaluation of demonstrator TUD
WP6 Dissemination, Standardization and Exploitation ADV


WP1 – Management

This WP includes the administrative project management and dissemination:

  • To coordinate the project, monitor progress, organize the distribution of resources
  • To communicate with the project officer of the EC
  • To assure that the project’s results are disseminated to the scientific community, the industry and the general public
  • Coordination of Review and Assessment process.

The project will have three reporting periods going to months M18, M36 and M48 which are followed by review meetings around months M20, M38 and M50. WP1 includes two tasks: Task 1.1 Management and Task 1.2 Website. It is led by TUD.

WP2 – System requirements, transceiver specifications and benefits evaluation

The objectives of this work package are:

  • To maintain the overall concept of DIMENSION and coordinate the technical activities among the different work-packages.
  • To identify and define the system requirements and characteristics according to the target objectives of capacity and energy efficiency, considering deployment limitations, expected demands and availability of auxiliary technologies.
  • Identify and agree specifications for the integrated passive and active photonic components
  • Identify and agree specifications for the electronic ICs
  • To quantify and evaluate the benefits of DIMENSION in terms of cost and energy efficiency – under different scenarios (such as traffic demand volume and pattern, datacentre architecture characteristics, cost values for the different network elements).

To provide commercialization roadmaps and analyze the necessary steps for a smooth and non-disruptive migration from existing technologies.

WP2 is led by AIT and contains four tasks: Task 2.1 System specifications and requirements ; Task 2.2 Component specifications and requirements; Task 2.3 Techno-economic evaluation and power consumption and Task 2.4 Feasibility studies and implementation roadmap.

WP3 – Optical component design and fabrication

The objective of WP3 is to provide the optical design, the optical base technology as well as the fabrication of active, III-V-based optical components to the project. The photonic design will devise optical circuits meeting the target specifications derived in WP2. Also, WP3 will provide input to WP4 on the parameters and figures of merit of the components fabricated in this workpackage to enable the electronic circuit designers to specifically match the electrical properties of the optical components (i.e. impedance, parasitics, speed limitations, etc.).

The technology pursued in this WP is based on integrating III-V materials on top of a pre-fabricated BiCMOS wafer containing electronics and optics (specifically silicon photonics). On top of this wafer III-V gain material will be integrated by two distinct methods:

  • At the first stage of the project (i.e. within the first 2 years), the III-V will be integrated by molecular wafer-bonding a III-V epitaxial layer stack grown on top of a InP wafer. After bonding, the InP wafer will be removed leaving the III-V epitaxial layer stack on the BiCMOS wafer. Subsequently the III-V will be patterned and transferred to WP5 for metallization and BEOL formation.
  • At a later stage in the project (i.e. within the last 2 years) a revolutionary new growth technique will be explored. The growth technique is called Confined Epitaxial Lateral Overgrowth (CELO) enabling the direct growth of III-V material on silicon. Therefore, this technique will be employed to directly grow active III-V devices (primarily lasers, but also electro-absorption modulators, and potentially also photodiodes) directly on top of the silicon waveguides. As this method is bonding-free and does not require any growth of expensive and size-limited epi-ready InP wafers, a significant cost-reduction is expected.

The objective of WP3 are thus:

  • Design of passive silicon photonics components according to WP2-specifications
  • Design of III-V active optical devices according to specifications derived in WP2
  • Growth of III-V epitaxial materials according to the specifications derived in WP2
  • Integration of III-V on silicon through a) wafer bonding or b) direct growth
  • Prototyping of silicon photonics and III-V based optical components in IBM’s BRNC cleanroom to ensure a first-time-right when co-integrating the components in IHP’s EPIC process

Therefore, WP3 provides the photonic designs and advanced optical technologies to the project. It is led by IBM and contains five tasks: Task 3.1 Design of optical devices and systems ; Task 3.2 Fabrication of silicon photonics; Task 3.3 III-V growth, planarization and bonding; Task 3.4 Direct growth of III-V on silicon photonics and Task 3.5 Fabrication of active optical devices on silicon photonics.

WP4 – Electronic design and electro-optic integration

The work package contains all electronic design and technology activities regarding ePIC devices and laser integration in photonic BiCMOS. The activities are split into electronic design, process development for laser integration in photonic BiCMOS, and 2 iterations of full-flow ePIC processing including laser integration. IHP’s ePIC technology integrates SiGe:C BiCMOS frontend with doped waveguides for modulators and Ge-photodiodes. The laser will be integrated within the dielectric matrix of the back-end-of-line (BEOL) above the SOI waveguides allowing for some mode overlap between III-V and waveguide, but not bonded directly on the waveguide. After inserting the laser, the BEOL fabrication will be finished in the 200mm line, making the laser integration a true wafer-level process. All silicon processing will take place at IHP, while all III-V processing will take place at IBM.

The objectives of this work package are:

  • Develpoment of laser integration technology
  • ePIC design (optical + electrical) for Tx
  • Fabrication of Tx ePICs

WP4 is led by IHP and contains four tasks: Task 4.1 Electronic Design; Task 4.2 Process Design, Development and Simulation; Task 4.3 Fabrication: Front-end-of-line (FEOL) and Task 4.4 Fabrication: Back-end-of-line (BEOL).

WP5 – Packaging and characterization and evaluation of demonstrators

A large set of devices and subsystems are to be measured and evaluated as the outcome of the different work packages of the DIMENSION project. In order to establish the progress made beyond the state of the art in these devices and planned sub-assemblies, large effort will be directed into the characterization and benchmarking of the devices. These activities will be coordinated in WP5 to stream-line the development of the envisioned demonstrators, and insure that fully functional modules are obtained. The specifications delivered in WP2 will be the basis for the evaluation of the devices and sub-assemblies as well as the system-level demonstrators. Feedback will be given to WP3 and WP4 to enable modifications and optimizations.

The objectives of this work package are:

  • Characterize the devices (electronic and photonic) made in the project, and extract vital parameters for further design optimization and benchmarking.
  • Characterize the fabricated sub-assemblies based on the integration of discrete photonic and electronic devices.

Benchmark the sub-assemblies made in the project against each other and against state-of-the-art competing solutions.

WP5 is led by TUD and contains four tasks: Task 5.1 Basic characterization of components; Task 5.2 Component-level experiments; Task 5.3 Packaging and Task 5.4 System-level experiments and verification.

WP6 – Dissemination, Standardization and Exploitation

This Work package deals with the exploitation and dissemination of the project’s results. The objectives of this Work package are listed below:

  • Publication of press releases (especially at beginning and end of project); providing dissemination kit
  • Generation of intellectual property (patents portfolio) to set the basis for potential commercialisation of products relevant to the project results.
  • Promotion of the project outputs through the participation in optical conferences and symposia. Preparation and distribution of technical brochures.
  • Dissemination of project results through publications in scientific journals and magazines, presentations in international conferences and workshops.
  • Coordinate Activities towards possible contributions to standardisation bodies (e.g. IEEE, ITU/FSAN)
  • Interaction with other EU and National projects (e.g. FP7/H2020 IPs/NoEs/STREPs/SSAs projects, COST, CRE, FET Actions).
  • Organisation of workshops, aiming to inform the researchers of the scientific community around the research topics, advances and implementation techniques that this project deals with.

The dissemination and exploitation plans and activities including standardisation and IP/IPR activities will be summarized and reported in separated reports which are accompanied with the project periodic reports. The dissemination/exploitation reports encompass all activities, e.g. organisation of/attendance at work-shops, conferences etc., publications, trainings and describes relevant business cases.

WP6 is led by ADV and contains three tasks: Task 6.1 Dissemination of results and project communication; Task 6.2 Standardisation/Patent Management and Task 6.3 Exploitation of project results.