The Rochester-based consortium AIM Photonics (American Institute for Manufacturing Photonics), an industry-driven public-private partnership advancing the USA’s photonics manufacturing capabilities, has announced a patent and intellectual property licensing agreement with IBM, which has also joined the consortium.
Managed by SUNY Polytechnic Institute, AIM Photonics was established in 2015 as part of the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, a federal initiative designed to foster innovation and deliver new capabilities that can ultimately create a nationwide manufacturing infrastructure for integrated photonics.
AIM Photonics views this as another significant step in the advancement of the silicon photonics industry in upstate New York. AIM Photonics is part of the overall Finger Lakes Forward revitalization effort — the region’s strategic plan for economic growth, which places an emphasis on the industry cluster of optics, photonics and imaging to realize the region’s full potential and act as a core driver of jobs and output growth.
The collaboration between IBM and AIM Photonics is expected to provide a path for the development of new technologies and products that will solidify the consortium’s position in the integrated photonics manufacturing ecosystem.
Also, the intellectual property licensing agreement with IBM should help AIM Photonics to establish standard processes in the development of silicon photonics assemblies, such as couplings for communication signals and light sources. Industry and academic AIM Photonics members will access these technologies through a process design kit (PDK) and prototype development at the Rochester Test Assembly and Packaging (TAP) facility and the 300mm chip facility at SUNY Poly’s campus at Albany, NY.
One of AIM Photonics’ primary goals is to make Rochester a technology hub for silicon photonics manufacturing and packaging, generating both growth and job opportunities for the city of Rochester, Monroe County, and the State as a whole.
“Adding IBM as a member of AIM Photonics not only significantly strengthens this outstanding institute, but highlights the momentum the Finger Lakes region is experiencing in the high-tech sector,” comments John Maggiore, New York State photonics board of officers chairman.
Through its membership, IBM will contribute to the development of AIM Photonics’ advanced integrated silicon photonics technology, packaging services, and other future offerings to make advanced technology available to AIM Photonics members and the wider technical community. Together with the other industry partners and the affiliated universities, IBM will help to direct advanced research activities of AIM Photonics towards new products.
“Working side by side with IBM photonic PIC and packaging experts is a significant milestone for AIM Photonics as we continue to advance our capabilities and prepare the TAP facility,” states Dr Michael Liehr, AIM Photonics’ CEO and SUNY Poly executive VP of Innovation & Technology and VP of Research.
Recently, at an AIM Photonics Technology summit during the Optical Networking and Communication Conference & Exhibition (OFC 2017) in Los Angeles (1-15 March), IBM’s Dr Wilfried Haensch gave the presentation ‘Advanced optical packaging for Integrated Silicon Photonics’ to more than 100 conference attendees.