Deep-subwavelength light transmission in hybrid nanowire-loaded silicon nano-rib waveguides

Yusheng Bian, Qiang Ren, Lei Kang, Taiwei Yue, Pingjuan L. Werner, Douglas H. Werner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Hybrid plasmonic waveguides leveraging the coupling between dielectric modes and plasmon polaritons have emerged as a major focus of research attention during the past decade. A feasible way for constructing practical hybrid plasmonic structures is to integrate metallic configurations with silicon-on-insulator waveguiding platforms. Here we report a transformative high-performance silicon-based hybrid plasmonic waveguide that consists of a silicon nano-rib loaded with a metallic nanowire. A deep-subwavelength mode area (λ2∕4.5 × 105− λ2∕7 × 103 ), in conjunction with a reasonable propagation distance (2.2–60.2 μm), is achievable at a telecommunication wavelength of 1.55 μm. Such a nano-rib-based waveguide outperforms its conventional hybrid and plasmonic waveguiding counterparts, demonstrating tighter optical confinement for similar propagation distances and a significantly enhanced figure of merit. The guiding properties of the fundamental mode are also quite robust against possible fabrication imperfections. Due to the strong confinement capability, our proposed hybrid configuration features ultralow waveguide cross talk and enables submicron bends with moderate attenuation as well. The outstanding optical performance renders such waveguides as promising building blocks for ultracompact passive and active silicon-based integrated photonic components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-45
Number of pages9
JournalPhotonics Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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