Photonic Solutions Enewsletter

New RSoft Photonic Device Tools, Photonic System Tools & PIC Design Suite Releases Now Available

We are pleased to announce the availability of version 2020.03 of our comprehensive Photonic Solutions portfolio, which includes the RSoft Photonic Device Tools, Photonic System Tools, and the PIC Design Suite

RSoft Photonic Device Tools 2020.03

  • Extended Custom PDK model data generation to active devices such as modulators and detectors through co-simulation between RSoft Photonic Device Tools and Sentaurus TCAD. Added a new example for an improved design/simulation flow for both ring and linear modulators using RSoft Device Tools and Sentaurus TCAD

  • Extended RSoft BSDF capability to produce and use parametric RSoft BSDF files, allowing for devices to be optimized wholly within LightTools. Gratings and other sub-wavelength structures can now more easily be chirped or apodized to achieve a desired performance for applications such as AR/VR structures

  • New graphical Waveguide Mode Utility to easily automate the calculation of modal properties such as dispersion, group index, group velocity, etc to help design waveguides, both straight and bent. Also, the group index data is now automatically included in compact waveguide models produced by the Custom PDK Utility for more efficient modeling at the circuit level

  • Improvements to both BeamPROP and FullWAVE for efficient data output when modeling extremely large devices

Photonic System Tools Version 2020.03

OptSim and ModeSYS
  • A new application note targeting long-haul telecom sector: Long-haul System Design with Remote Optically Pumped Amplifier (ROPA)


  • A new application note for the aerospace and defense sector: Linearization of analog photonic radio-over-fiber (RoF) links with high suppression of third-order intermodulation distortion (IMD3)

  • A new application note for the 5G and free-space optics markets: Receiver sensitivity comparison of NRZ and DPSK optical free-space communication systems

PIC Design Suite Version 2020.03

OptSim Circuit:

  • Enhancement to bidirectional multiport model used to characterize passive photonic device in terms of an S-Matrix, to support both non-uniform frequency and wavelength data
  • Improved simulation of compact models produced by the Custom PDK Utility. These models now include group delay data instead of phase data allowing accurate phase simulation, even with coarse data resolution

  • Four new application notes of interest to the PICs for data center interconnect market:
    • PAM-4 Transmitter using segmented-electrode Mach-Zehnder modulator (SE-MZM)
    • Impact of inter-segment distance deviations in SE-MZM PAM-2 transmitters
    • Impact of segmented electrode time-delay variations in SE-MZM PAM-2 transmitters
    • Impact of capacitive charge and response time of segmented electrodes in PAM-2 SE-MZM transmitters


  • Improved interface with OptSim Circuit enabling hierarchical layout designs using a freeform script structure
  • OptoDesigner can now export in the DXF file format, allowing designs to more easily transferred to other programs such as SOLIDWORKS or AutoCAD
  • Support for import and export of hdf5 data files to facilitate the storage and use of large, structured data sets
  • Dynamic code snippets that enable PDKs to always provide up-to-date die templates and examples, irrespective of tool version

For more details about these and other updates, please refer to the release notes on the Customer Portal.

IMPORTANT: Photonic Solutions Software Support for Windows 7 and Legacy Linux Versions to be Discontinued

Photonic Solutions products version 2020.03, as well as any 2020.03 service releases, will be the last versions to officially support both Windows 7 and RedHat/CentOS 6.5 or older. This includes the RSoft Photonics Device Tools, Photonic System Tools, and the PIC Design Suite. For Linux, there will be no support for Linux versions with a kernel older than 2.6.32-504 and glibc older than 2.12; you can find the glibc version of your system by running the command "ldd --version" in a terminal; the kernel version can be found via the command "uname -r".

Software and License Download Instructions

Direct-Sales Customers

Software and license key files for customers are available on the Synopsys SolvNetPlus website. If you need assistance accessing SolvNetPlus or obtaining the software and license codes, please contact

International Customers

Some of our customers will obtain the software and license key files from their local software distributor. See the Synopsys Optical Solutions Group Global Contacts page for contact information. If your country is not listed on the Distributors page referenced above, please contact us at

OFC Conference Update

Synopsys Participation Cancelled at OFC 2020

In light of the increased global spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Synopsys is not attending the Optical Fiber Conference (OFC), March 8-12, 2020.

We are sorry to miss the opportunity to meet with you at OFC and demonstrate our complete solutions to design and manufacture photonic devices, systems, and integrated circuits.

We will be in touch to reschedule meetings planned at OFC. You can also contact us at to schedule a demo or request a trial version of our software solutions.

Thank you very much for your continued support and we look forward to speaking with you soon!

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Upcoming Events

For a complete list, please go to our Events Page.

March 31 - April 1, 2020

PIC International
Brussels, Belgium

April 3, 2020

Optical Transceiver Design for Datacom Applications Using a PAM4 Photonic IC

April 8, 2020

EPIC Webinar on Beyond 400G

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