Bascom Hunter was an early adopter of integrated photonics due to its increase in RF performance, increase in optical circuit complexity, and reduction in size, weight, and power (SWaP). Integrated Photonics have miniaturized photonic systems which once occupied 4U rack space to a 6 mm2 chip space. Since the emergence of photonic foundries, Bascom Hunter has become a leader in integrated microwave photonics and integrated neuromorphic photonics.
Bascom Hunter currently focuses on the development of silicon photonic integrated circuits (PICs) due to their CMOS compatibility which enables the integration of efficient modulators, co-integrated CMOS electronics, and a mature manufacturing process. Silicon photonics is also lattice matched with Germanium yielding high-speed co-integrated photodetectors. The benefits of silicon monolithic integration include commercial-grade analog photonic links with 40 GHz of bandwidth (100 GHz research-grade), < 0.1 dB processing elements, and 10+ dB of link gain improvement compared to fiber-based discrete optics.
In addition to silicon photonics, Basom Hunter has expertise in two secondary photonic platforms: fully active Indium-Phosphide and passive ultra-low loss Silicon Nitride. Indium Phosphide PICs are based on micro-quantum well (MQW) technology and allow for full integration of all optical elements, laser, processing, amplifiation, and detection. Silicon Nitride PICs have the low propagation loss of all photonic foundries but have the least amount of functionality.