FAQ

What is a PIC (Photonic Integrated Circuit)?

A PIC, or Photonic Integrated Circuit, is a chip that manipulates light. Its fabrication process is similar to the electronic industry, where an EIC, or electronic integrated circuit, is the functional chip. However, in the EIC, manipulation is done using voltages and currents (electrons), while in the PIC, manipulations are done using light (photons) with lasers and detectors. This new method of manipulation has opened up new markets in sensing and computation. Both technologies are complementary to each other and have the potential to revolutionize various industries.

What does LIGENTEC offer?

LIGENTEC is a leading provider of silicon nitride-based Photonic Integrated Circuits (PICs), which are fabricated using our proprietary nitride fabrication methods. Our PICs offer thicknesses ranging from 100 nm to 800 nm in single layers and multi-layer circuits. We provide comprehensive support to our customers in terms of design, layout and packaging of our PICs. Our team is dedicated to helping you achieve success in the shortest time possible.

What does MPW mean?

MPW stands for Multi-Project Wafer run. This is a fabrication process that involves combining small designs from multiple customers onto a single large design area to reduce costs. The production of a Photonic Integrated Circuit (PIC) involves a significant fixed cost, but making additional copies is relatively inexpensive. Therefore, MPW is an ideal approach to test, optimize and perfect a new concept before committing to a larger fabrication run.

How do I register for an upcoming MPW?

To register for an upcoming MPW, any customer can get in touch with the LIGENTEC Sales team by visiting our contact page or sending an email to info@ligentec.com. You can also check out our upcoming schedule here and follow the LIGENTEC LinkedIn page to stay updated on any special MPW that may become available in the near future.

What does PDK mean?

A PDK, which stands for Process Design Kit, is a set of files that assists photonics designers in creating successful designs on the LIGENTEC platform. The PDK includes design manuals that explain our layer stack, simulation files to test and evaluate our platform’s performance, supporting files to help with drawing the layouts in different mask drawing software, and other useful resources.

How do I get your PDK?

In order to access our Process Design Kit (PDK), you will need to contact the LIGENTEC Sales team via the following URL: https://www.ligentec.com/pdk/. They will provide you with a Design Kit License Agreement (DKLA) which will need to be signed by a representative from your company or university. Once the DKLA is signed, the SALES team will provide you with the PDK.

How long does it take to receive the chips?

LIGENTEC is renowned for its quick turnaround time. We offer an industry-leading turnaround time of just 10 weeks for the most popular X1-platform, starting from the date of receiving a DRC-clean design after the submission deadline. However, depending on some extra modules such as local oxide openings, packaging, etc., a few additional weeks may be added to the total turnaround time.

Which kind of photonic chips can I get?

LIGENTEC is a company that specializes in the production of LPCVD deposited thin and thick-film silicon nitride waveguides. In addition to this core functionality, they offer a range of other modules, including heaters, fiber-couplers, local oxide openings for sensing, heterogeneous integration, and more. The design manuals in the PDK provide detailed information about the properties and performance of each available module.

How do I submit the design?

Once you register for a MPW, the LIGENTEC Sales team will provide instructions on accessing their customer portal server. There, you can submit your design and receive feedback.

Where is your foundry located?

LIGENTEC is a European provider of photonic integrated circuits (PICs) and all the fabrication steps are carried out in Europe.

Which are the application areas of your silicon nitride photonic integrated chips?

Key applications include Datacom/Telecom, LiDAR, Quantum, beamforming, AR/VR, sensing, wearables, space, atomic clocks, astronomy, neuromorphic computing, 5G, and 6G.

Which are the current job openings?

Check out our careers page for current job openings, and follow us on LinkedIn to stay updated on new opportunities.

Where is LIGENTEC located?

LIGENTEC SA is headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland. LIGENTEC France is situated in the region of Île-de-France near Paris, France.

I would like to meet you personally, how can I do that?

If you’re interested in visiting any of our sites, you can arrange a company visit by sending us a request. Additionally, you can meet us at any of the conferences we attend. To know which conferences we’ll be attending, please check our events page and follow us on LinkedIn, where we regularly update our presence and keep you informed about upcoming events.

LOW-LOSS INTEGRATED PHOTONICS