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Photonic‐on‐a‐chip: a thermal actuated Mach‐Zehnder interferometer and a molecular thermometer based on a single di‐ureasil organic‐inorganic hybrid

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An integrated photonic‐on‐a‐chip device based on a single organic‐inorganic di‐ureasil hybrid was fabricated for optical waveguide and temperature sensing. The device is composed by a thermal actuated Mach‐Zehnder (MZ) interferometer operating with a switching power of 0.011 W and a maximum temperature difference between branches of 0.89 ºC. The MZ interferometer is covered by a Eu3+/Tb3+ co‐doped di‐ureasil luminescent molecular thermometer with a temperature uncertainty of 0.1ºC and a spatial resolution of 13 µm. This is an uncommon example in which the same material (an organic‐inorganic hybrid) that is used to fabricate a particular device (a thermal‐actuated MZ interferometer) is also used to measure one of the device intrinsic properties (the operating temperature). The photonic‐on‐a‐chip example discussed here can be applied to sense temperature gradients with high resolution (10−3 ºC·µm−1) in chip‐scale heat engines or refrigerators, magnetic nanocontacts and energy‐harvesting machines. An integrated photonic‐on‐a‐chip device based on a single organic‐inorganic di‐ureasil hybrid was fabricated for optical waveguide and temperature sensing. The device is composed by a thermal actuated Mach‐Zehnder (MZ) interferometer operating with a switching power of 0.011 W and a maximum temperature difference between branches of 0.89 ºC. The MZ interferometer is covered by a Eu3+/Tb3+ co‐doped di‐ureasil luminescent molecular thermometer with a temperature uncertainty of 0.1ºC and a spatial resolution of 13 µm. This is an uncommon example in which the same material (an organic‐inorganic hybrid) that is used to fabricate a particular device (a thermal‐actuated MZ interferometer) is also used to measure one of the device intrinsic properties (the operating temperature). The photonic‐on‐a‐chip example discussed here can be applied to sense temperature gradients with high resolution (10−3 ºC·µm−1) in chip‐scale heat engines or refrigerators, magnetic nanocontacts and energy‐harvesting machines.
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Keywords: Organic‐Inorganic hybrids; optically active materials; photoluminescence; photonics; photonic‐on‐a‐chip device

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2013

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