10 - Light-path engineering in disordered waveguiding systems

Concept of a disordered waveguiding system with engineered light paths based on a lithographically structured free-standing membrane with multiple input and output ports. The output ports are terminated with nanowire waveguide detectors

Integrated nanophotonic circuits allow for realizing complex optical functionality in a compact and reproducible fashion through high-yield nanofabrication. Typically configured for single-mode operation in a single path, the optical propagation direction in such devices is determined by the waveguide layout which inherently requires smooth surfaces without scattering and restricts the device footprint to the limits of total internal reflection. By moving forward to multi-mode and multi-path designs in intentionally disordered waveguide structures, we will harness in-plane scattering effects to realize a new class of functional waveguiding devices. Through light-path engineering of free-standing dielectric membranes compact and broadband optical systems will be derived for operation in the classical and quantum regime. Our approach is based on multi-path interference, leading to the generation of wavelength dependent speckle patterns at the output of a tailored photonic nanostructure.