What's New in Photonic Solutions

Announcing OptSim Elite and Photonic Device Compiler

In 2020, Synopsys unveiled the OptoCompiler solution for photonic integrated circuit (PIC) design, layout implementation, and verification. OptoCompiler is the industry’s first unified electronic and photonic design platform, combining mature and dedicated photonic technology with Synopsys’ industry-proven electronic design tools and methods to enable engineers to produce and verify complex PIC designs quickly and accurately. Download the OptoCompiler product features datasheet to learn more.

We are expanding OptoCompiler to include two new tools: OptSim Elite and Photonic Device Compiler. The tools are integrated into OptoCompiler for seamless design and simulation of photonic systems, circuits, and devices.

Synopsys Photonic Solutions Platform | Synopsys

OptSim Elite Now Available

OptSim Elite is Synopsys’ new simulation solution that provides complete photonic system and circuit simulation capabilities and electro-optic (E/O) co-simulation with Synopsys’ electrical circuit simulators. OptSim Elite integrates seamlessly with OptoCompiler’s simulation and analysis environment.

OptSim Elite | Synopsys

Figure 1. Photonic and electronic circuit and system simulation in the complete and unified Synopsys platform for PIC design and manufacture.


In addition to a complete PIC model library, OptSim Elite provides a rich library of single- and multimode fiber-optic system design models to support PIC testing at the system level. Other capabilities include:

  • Models bidirectional signal flow for both optical (single- and multi-wavelength) and electrical signals
  • Models multipath interference (MPI), reflections and resonances from network and PIC elements
  • Supports simulation of design hierarchies
  • Supports measurement- and datafile-driven modeling of active and passive, photonic, and electronic components and circuits
  • Supports PDK-driven design as well as custom libraries
  • Supports co-simulation with HSPICE and FineSim
Contact us at photonics@synopsys.com to learn more.

Photonic Device Compiler Now Available

Photonic Device Compiler enables IC designers and PDK developers to design, analyze, and optimize photonic devices within OptoCompiler.

Photonic Device Compiler provides a wide range of physical simulation methods in a single tool.  Users can incorporate device-level simulation results in a custom device library, a PDK, or an IP library. The custom devices can be used in Synopsys’ PIC software solutions for schematic capture, circuit-level simulation, layout and verification.

With Photonic Device Compiler, you use the industry’s most comprehensive set of photonic device simulators seamlessly integrated with Sentaurus TCAD, the industry-leading process and electrical device simulation tool.  

Photonic Device Compiler | Synopsys

Figure 2. Highlighting the role of Photonic Device Compiler in the complete Synopsys platform for PIC design and manufacture.


  • Complete photonic device simulation, analysis, and optimization solution 
  • Seamless integration with OptoCompiler, OptSim Elite, and IC Validator 
  • E/O device level co-simulation with Sentaurus TCAD 
  • Custom component design for foundry PDKs

Contact us at photonics@synopsys.com to learn more.

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

RSoft Photonic Device Tools 2021.03

New features and improvements include:

  • Updates to FullWAVE FDTD and the LED Utility to enhance support for micro-LEDs and nano-wire LEDS
  • Improved multi-plane far-field to more easily and efficiently calculate emission pattern for non-flat structures like micro-LEDS and nano-wire LEDs
  • Streamlined defaults for many options to simplify the design process
  • Added polarization weight control for the optical source
  • Reduced simulation time via clustering: the LED Utility now supports clustering to allow simulations to be run in parallel
  • Added 3D far-field profile and extraction ratio vs. cone angle plot
  • Improvements to better support Large Scale Computing:
  • Improved loading time in the RSoft CAD for large design files
  • Improved FullWAVE FDTD convergence monitor and field display performance
  • Streamlined process to import CIS (CMOS Image Sensor) geometries from Sentaurus TCAD for simulation with FullWAVE FDTD and/or DiffractMOD RCWA
  • Added support for the creation of custom active component models for OptoCompiler to the Custom PDK Utility
3D MicroLED | Synopsys
MicroLED Extraction Ratio | Synopsys

Figure 3. 3D far-field plot for a micro-LED (left) and extraction ratio vs. cone angle (right).

Photonic System Tools 2021.03

OptSim and ModeSYS

New features and improvements include:

  • New application note targeting long-haul and short-reach telecom sectors:  Relative Intensity Noise (RIN)-induced Penalties
  • New application note of interest to the long-haul and data center sectors: Implementing a Stokes Vector Modulator (SVM)

PIC Design Suite 2021.03

OptSim Circuit and OptoDesigner

New features and improvements include:

OptoCompiler 2021.03

New features and improvements include:

  • Electrical-photonic co-simulation, integrated into SAE
    • Created mix signal EO netlist
  • Implemented SAE scalar measurements
  • Implemented hierarchy in layouts with schematic back annotation
    • Updated layout MaskTechnology framework to allow for hierarchical processing
    • Updated boolean engine to support hierarchical mask export
    • Created Python evaluator for back-annotated hierarchical layouts

Important Notice: Platform Support and Installation Updates for 2021.03

There is a new combined Windows installer for all Photonic Solutions products, including the RSoft Photonic Device Tools, Photonic System Tools, and the PIC Design Suite. For more product installation information, visit our Support page.

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 photonics@synopsys.com.


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 photonics@synopsys.com.

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