Coupling Ideality of Integrated Planar High-QMicroresonators
Physical Review Applied
Chipscale microresonators with integrated planar optical waveguides are useful building blocks for linear, nonlinear and quantum optical devices. Loss reduction through improving fabrication processes has resulted in several integrated micro resonator platforms attaining quality (Q) factors of several millions. However only few studies have investigated design-dependent losses, especially with regard to the resonator coupling section. Here we investigate design-dependent parasitic losses,
... sitic losses, described by the coupling ideality, of the commonly employed microresonator design consisting of a microring resonator waveguide side-coupled to a straight bus waveguide. By systematic characterization of multi-mode high-Q silicon nitride microresonator devices, we show that this design can suffer from low coupling ideality. By performing full 3D simulations to numerically investigate the resonator to bus waveguide coupling, we identify the coupling to higher-order bus waveguide modes as the dominant origin of parasitic losses which lead to the low coupling ideality. Using suitably designed bus waveguides, parasitic losses are mitigated, and a nearly unity ideality and strong overcoupling (i.e. a ratio of external coupling to internal resonator loss rate > 9) are demonstrated. Moreover we find that different resonator modes can exchange power through the coupler, which therefore constitutes a mechanism that induces modal coupling, a phenomenon known to distort resonator dispersion properties. Our results demonstrate the potential for significant performance improvements of integrated planar microresonators, achievable by optimized coupler designs.