Integration Through PLC
In this article we review how Planar Lightwave Circuit (PLC) technology, originally developed for low-cost optical access products, is now being applied to other markets including advanced 40G/100G applications. Earlier applications in Fiber-to-the-Home utilized PLCs mainly for their lower cost and better manufacturability compared to bulk-optic alternatives. New applications have begun to rely exclusively on PLCs for delivering optical functionality that is not readily achievable in bulk-optics. At the core is a highly flexible PLC platform that allows precise phase control and the ability to integrate a myriad of active components on the optical chip.