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Silicon Photonics

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Entries in Intengent (3)


Books in 2018

Gazettabyte has asked various industry executives to discuss the books they have read in 2018. Here, Valery Tolstikhin and Alexandra Wright-Gladstein give their recommendations.

Valery Tolstikhin, president and CEO of Intengent, a consultancy

I read too many technical and business texts during the day so I leave my bedtime for more human reading.  

This year I wasn’t too lucky with fiction books but I did read some great non-fiction ones: Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari, Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos and Leonardo Da Vinci by Walter Isaacson

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An insider's view on the merits of optical integration

One of the pleasures of attending the OFC show, held in Los Angeles last month, is the many conversations possible in one location. The downside is that too many are cut short due to the show's hectic schedule. One exception was a conversation with Valery Tolstikhin (pictured), held in a quiet room prior to the exhibition hall's opening.

Tolstikhin is president and CEO of Intengent, the Ottawa-based consultancy and custom design service provider, and an industry veteran of photonic integration. In 2005 he founded OneChip Photonics, a fabless maker of indium phosphide photonic integrated circuits for optical access

One important lesson he learned at OneChip was how the cost benefit of a photonic integrated circuit (PIC) can be eroded with a cheap optical sub-assembly made from discrete off-the-shelf components. When OneChip started, the selling price for GPON optics was around $100 a unit but this quickly came down to $6. "We needed sales in volumes and they never came close to meeting $6," says Tolstikhin.

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Silicon photonics economics set to benefit III-V photonics  

Silicon photonics promises to deliver cheaper optical components using equipment, processes and fabrication plants paid for by the chip industry. Now, it turns out, traditional optical component players using indium phosphide and gallium arsenide can benefit from similar economies, thanks to the wireless IC chip industry.


Valery TolstikhinSilicon photonics did a good thing; it turned the interest of the photonics industry to the operational ways of silicon 



So argues Valery Tolstikhin, head of a design consultancy and former founder and CTO of Canadian start-up OneChip Photonics. The expectations for silicon photonics may still to be fulfilled, says Tolstikhin, but what the technology has done is spark interest in the economics of component making. And when it comes to chip economics, volumes count.

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