Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Materials Science and Engineering (PhD)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Materials Science and Engineering


Miguel Levy


One dimensional magnetic photonic crystals (1D-MPC) are promising structures for integrated optical isolator applications. Rare earth substituted garnet thin films with proper Faraday rotation are required to fabricate planar 1D-MPCs. In this thesis, flat-top response 1D-MPC was proposed and spectral responses and Faraday rotation were modeled. Bismuth substituted iron garnet films were fabricated by RF magnetron sputtering and structures, compositions, birefringence and magnetooptical properties were studied. Double layer structures for single mode propagation were also fabricated by sputtering for the first time.

Multilayer stacks with multiple defects (phase shift) composed of Ce-YIG and GGG quarter-wave plates were simulated by the transfer matrix method. The transmission and Faraday rotation characteristics were theoretically studied. It is found that flat-top response, with 100% transmission and near 45o rotation is achievable by adjusting the inter-defect spacing, for film structures as thin as 30 to 35 μm. This is better than 3-fold reduction in length compared to the best Ce-YIG films for comparable rotations, thus allows a considerable reduction in size in manufactured optical isolators. Transmission bands as wide as 7nm were predicted, which is considerable improvement over 2 defects structure. Effect of repetition number and ratio factor on transmission and Faraday rotation ripple factors for the case of 3 and 4 defects structure has been discussed. Diffraction across the structure corresponds to a longer optical path length. Thus the use of guided optics is required to minimize the insertion losses in integrated devices. This part is discussed in chapter 2 in this thesis.

Bismuth substituted iron garnet thin films were prepared by RF magnetron sputtering. We investigated or measured the deposition parameters optimization, crystallinity, surface morphologies, composition, magnetic and magnetooptical properties. A very high crystalline quality garnet film with smooth surface has been heteroepitaxially grown on (111) GGG substrate for films less than 1μm. Dual layer structures with two distinct XRD peaks (within a single sputtered film) start to develop when films exceed this thickness. The development of dual layer structure was explained by compositional gradient across film thickness, rather than strain gradient proposed by other authors. Lower DC self bias or higher substrate temperature is found to help to delay the appearance of the 2nd layer. The deposited films show in-plane magnetization, which is advantageous for waveguide devices application. Propagation losses of fabricated waveguides can be decreased by annealing in an oxygen atmosphere from 25dB/cm to 10dB/cm. The Faraday rotation at λ=1.55μm were also measured for the waveguides. FR is small (10° for a 3mm long waveguide), due to the presence of linear birefringence. This part is covered in chapter 4.

We also investigated the elimination of linear birefringence by thickness tuning method for our sputtered films. We examined the compressively and tensilely strained films and analyze the photoelastic response of the sputter deposited garnet films. It has been found that the net birefringence can be eliminated under planar compressive strain conditions by sputtering. Bi-layer GGG on garnet thin film yields a reduced birefringence. Temperature control during the sputter deposition of GGG cover layer is critical and strongly influences the magnetization and birefringence level in the waveguide. High temperature deposition lowers the magnetization and increases the linear birefringence in the garnet films. Double layer single mode structures fabricated by sputtering were also studied. The double layer, which shows an in-plane magnetization, has an increased RMS roughness upon upper layer deposition. The single mode characteristic was confirmed by prism coupler measurement. This part is discussed in chapter 5.