Global Communication Semiconductors, Intengent, and VLC Photonics Enter into a Partnership to Provide One-Stop Fabless Development Services for PICs in Indium Phosphide

TORRANCE, Calif. — (BUSINESS WIRE) — January 25, 2018 — Global Communication Semiconductors (GCS), a premier compound semiconductor wafer fabrication foundry, Intengent, an independent consultant in III-V photonics, and VLC Photonics (VLC), a pioneer photonic integrated circuit (PIC) design house, will jointly offer fabless development into production services for customized PICs in Indium Phosphide (InP).

GCS provides a broad range of wafer foundry services, based on a proprietary regrowth-free InP process. Originally developed as a state-of-the-art Opto and heterojunction-bipolar-transistor (HBT) processes, it also allows for prototyping and volume-scalable production of PICs. The key enabler is a photonic integration platform that is compatible with the foundry’s regrowth-free process and yet suitable for a variety of applications.

Intengent has developed such a platform, termed Taper Assisted Vertical Integration (TAVI), which is regrowth-free, based on the GCS process, and enables for decoupling of epitaxial growth and wafer fabrication. TAVI covers many PIC applications, including those in growing and emerging markets, like optical interconnects and switching markets. It also offers complimentary solutions to silicon photonics, which is considered by many the technology of choice for a high-scale integration but lacks amplifying, lasing, and other functions naturally implementable in InP. In a three-way partnership with GCS and VLC, Intengent is working towards making TAVI a generic platform while preserving its flexibility and openness to PIC customization.

VLC Photonics is a renowned expert in generic photonic integration platforms and, as a fabless and independent design house for PICs, has been developing design libraries and process design kits (PDK) for different foundry platforms and customers. A PDK for the TAVI platform drastically reduces the PIC design effort and risk, by shifting the focus towards circuit level simulations. The evolving PDK is based on a number of verified active and passive building blocks, and is already used in commercial PIC designs carried out by the partnership.

Brian Ann, GCS’ CEO, says: “Our well-established processes have great synergies with the TAVI PIC platform. Our 4”/6” wafer capability, based on a commercially supplied one-step-growth epitaxy, creates a unique opportunity for InP PICs. We believe that the GCS–Intengent–VLC partnership can fully utilize this opportunity and generate significant PIC business in various markets. By leveraging the infrastructure and expertise that we have gained in high-volume RF and optoelectronics markets, this partnership offers time/cost-efficient PIC development into production."

Valery Tolstikhin, CEO of Intengent, adds: “GCS is an advanced III-V foundry with a high InP wafer throughout both in RF electronics and optoelectronics markets. The TAVI platform takes advantage of GCS’ process maturity and extends it to PICs in InP. To make the technology suitable for a fabless PIC development, one more thing is needed: the PDK. This is where VLC comes in, bringing a wealth of experience in PIC design and characterization. The fabrication process, the integration platform, and the PDK, together, make a versatile generic platform for PICs in InP that allows the end users to access the commercial-grade technology under the fabless model."

“Joining with Intengent and GCS for commercialization of the TAVI platform in a large-scale photonic foundry was a challenging but exciting experience,” Iñigo Artundo, CEO of VLC, further explains. “VLC has a solid approach to working with foundries, EDA partners and customers on PDK development, based on its commercial and proprietary design tools, characterization techniques, and in-house test and measurement capabilities. We are positive that TAVI implemented over the GCS process has a great potential as a generic platform for PICs in InP, enabling for both customization and volume scalability in an environment of industrial-grade wafer fabrication."

About GCS
GCS is an AS9100D/ISO9001:2015 certified premier Compound Semiconductor wafer fabrication foundry headquartered in Torrance California. GCS’s goal is to supply high performance, quality, specialty III-V semiconductor devices and solutions to the wireless, power electronics and fiber optical communications markets.

About Intengent
Intengent is an independent consultancy firm based in Ottawa, Canada and specializing in III-V photonics for tele-, data-, and computer-com markets. It provides fabless development services to those in need for advanced photonic devices and integrated circuits but without an access to enabling technologies.

About VLC Photonics
VLC Photonics is a photonic design house based in Valencia, Spain, which provides turn-key photonic integration solutions in multiple application fields. It has a wide range of experiences with various material platforms (silicon photonics, indium phosphide, silicon nitride, PLC) and offers fabless development services for photonic integrated circuits in telecom/datacom, microwave photonics, quantum optics, biophotonics and optical sensing markets.


Samuel Wang, +1-310-346-4721
Email Contact
Valery Tolstikhin, +1-613-355-2526
Email Contact
VLC Photonics
Iñigo Artundo, +34 961337884
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