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Leader in Integrated ICT Hardware & Systems

PIXAPP and PHIX strengthen collaboration to boost Europe’s photonic ecosystem

Posted on: 08 Dec 2017

PIXAPP and PHIX strengthen collaboration to boost Europe’s photonic ecosystem

PIXAPP, the world’s first open-access Photonic Integrated Circuit (PIC) Assembly and Packaging Pilot line, and PHIX Photonics Assembly have strengthened their collaboration in the development of the photonic packaging ecosystem by facilitating dedicated training of PHIX engineers on Tyndall’s advanced packaging equipment. This sharing of knowledge will strengthen the photonics ecosystem in Europe, ensuring open access to high volume Photonic Integrated Circuit (PIC) packaging through the PIXAPP Pilot Line.

PIC based photonics involves the generation, control and detection of light. It impacts our lives in many areas, including high-speed fiber optic communications, medical diagnostic sensors, the control of self-driving cars and emerging mass markets in the internet of things. Our need for photonics is driven by the fact that the speed and usage of our day-to-day communication technologies is almost at capacity. PICs will address mass market requirements in communications, healthcare and security.

PHIX offers their customers photonic assembly services targeting high volume PIC applications. The initiator and shareholder of PHIX (LioniX International) is also a partner in the PIXAPP Pilot Line, and will provide PIXAPP with access to a new high-volume assembly line as the next stage for customers after accessing the Pilot Line. Both PHIX and Tyndall will actively supply engineering resources to support the further development of packaging and assembly processes.

PHIX Photonics Assembly engineers visiting Tyndall’s packaging laboratories of Tyndall for training on advanced packaging technologies and to learn about packaging design rules.
PHIX Photonics Assembly engineers visiting Tyndall’s packaging laboratories for training on advanced packaging technologies and to learn about packaging design rules.




Hybrid integration platform, assembly competence in PHIX

PHIX will provide state-of-the-art infrastructure in the Netherlands, supporting the European and worldwide industrial development of PICs. PHIX focuses on a hybrid platform, consisting of two or more different chips assembled in a planar configuration and coupled to optical fibers. The PICs are fabricated on Indium Phosphide or Silicon substrates. This hybrid platform supports a wide range of applications, and PHIX will standardize key process and assembly steps with the support of Tyndall.

“Offering packaging services requires both processing and state of the art equipment knowledge”, says Albert Hasper, CEO of PHIX. ”With Tyndall, we have found a partner that has a broad range of processing knowledge for PIC assemblies complementary to our expertise”.

Peter O’Brien, Director of the PIXAPP Pilot line at Tyndall adds “we are delighted to support PHIX in the development of volume packaging processes and to provide comprehensive training to its staff. A key objective of PIXAPP is to build the integrated photonics ecosystem, establishing a volume manufacturing capability in Europe. Our focus on packaging design rules helps achieve this objective, ensuring efficient and scalable assembly processes. We plan to train PHIX engineers on the principles of these design rules, and how to implement them to build complex integrated photonic assemblies”


About PHIX Photonics Assembly

PHIX supplies the photonics industry with assembly and packaging services for Photonics Integrated Circuits. The photonics industry is one of fastest growing industries at moment and can be compared with the electronics industry of the 70’s during the introduction of the ICs. In photonic integration there are three main technology platforms and each has its preferred application areas.  Silicon, InP, and TriPleX. Combining these different platforms by hybrid integration even enhances the possible application of photonic integration into the fast growing markets like tele and datacommunication, life science, automotive and consumer electronics. The main challenge for combining the PIC platforms is in the hybrid integration of the various PICs in one package. Not only have the PICs to be connected to optical fibers and electrical connections but also they have to be interconnected. This is the main focus of PHIX: to supply PIC manufacturers for assembly of their PICs and package them into qualified modules for their OEM customers.


About Tyndall

Tyndall National Institute is a leading European research centre in integrated ICT (Information and Communications Technology) hardware and systems. Central to Tyndall’s mission is delivering economic impact through research excellence. We work with industry and academia to transform research into products in our core market areas of agri-food, communications, energy, environment and health.

As the national institute for photonics and micro/nanoelectronics, Tyndall, at University College Cork, employs over 500 researchers, engineers and support staff, with a cohort of 120 full-time graduate students. Together we generated over 270 peer-reviewed publications in 2016.