All-CMOS silicon light sources, although not the choice semiconductor process for light
generation, offer the possibility of large scale manufacturing, integration with digital and driver
electronics as well as a wide operating temperature range. These advantages do however come at a
cost of reduced efficiency, but offer significant cost advantages inherent when using a standard
CMOS technology. This paper presents two applications of standard CMOS integrated light sources.
A fully functional microdisplay utilising avalanche electroluminescence for visible light generation
and implemented in a completely standard 0.35 μm CMOS technology is presented. The microdisplay
has an operating temperature range of -50 to 125 °C, which cannot be achieved by competing
microdisplay technologies. Utilising the same silicon light sources, a 10 Mb/s optical communication
link is established operating at a BER of less than 10-12. The data communication link presented in
this paper constitutes the fastest all-silicon data communication link achieved thus far.