MEMS Reflective Fiber Optical Variable Attenuator With Power Monitor

  • High Reliability
  • Direct DC drive
  • Ultra Small
  • Integrated Tap



This device features compact size, high reliability, direct driver, integrated power monitor, and low cost. The tap can monitor either input or output power. For output tap, a special circuit with built-in calibration is required The MEMS Series Fiber Optical Variable Attenuator uses a patented thermal activated micro-mirror, moving-in and -out optical paths, uniquely offering large extinction ratio, high stability over wide temperature range, and very long life cycle. The thermal MEMS is insensitive to moisture and ESD without drift issues, providing a high reliability platform for over 25 years continuous operation. The MEMS Straight Series VOAs are configured in single and dual channels (activated at the same time). The VOAs are bidirectional and are Telcordia standards GR1221 qualified.

Photonwares provides customized design and modular assemblies to meet control and integration applications.


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MEMS VOA with Tap Min Typical Max Unit
 Operation Wavelength                                                1260                     1620 nm
 Insertion Loss [1] 0.6 1.2 dB
 Polarization Dependent Loss [2] (SM version only) 0.15 0.5 dB
 Wavelength Dependence Loss [3], [4] 0.2 0.6 dB
 Attenuation Range 30 40 50 dB
 Attenuation Resolution Continuous
 Extinction Ratio (PM version only) 18 23 25 dB
 Polarization Mode Dispersion (SM version only) 0.01 0.05 ps
 Return Loss 45 dB
 Response Time 3 6 ms
 Driving Voltage [5] 4.5 5 V
 Device Resistance 80 100 120 W
 Optical Power handling 300 500 mW
 Tap Response @ 1550nm [8] 12 15 40 mA/W
Tap directivity N/A or 25 dB
 Tap Wavelength Dependence Response[6] 0.010 0.013 0.02 dB/nm
 Tap Polarization Dependence Response 0.02 0.10 0.25 dB
 Tap Temperature Dependence Response 0.01 dB/°C
 Tap Dark Current at 5V bias @ 23°C 0.2 1 nA
 Tap Dark Current at 5V bias @ 70°C 30 70 nA
 Tap 3dB Bandwidth (cutoff frequency) 10 MHz
 Tap Capacitance 12 pF
 Operating Temperature -5 75 oC
 Storage Temperature -40 85 oC
Notes: [1].Without connector and at room temperature [2].At attenuation equal or less than 20 dB [3].At 0dB attenuation and at whole temperature range [4].Within 40nm Bandwidth [5].At 20dB attenuation for transparent version, at 0.8dB attenuation for opaque version. [6].This is related to tap ratio. The spec data is regarding 3% tap. [7].Over this value will damage the device. [8] Tap response depends on tap ratio.