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Title: Mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers

Abstract

We report on the demonstration of mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers operating at 10 {mu}m. The laser structures are grown on n-InAs (100) substrate by solid-source molecular-beam epitaxy. An InAs/AlGaSb chirped superlattice structure providing a large oscillator strength and fast carrier depopulation is employed as the active part. The observed minimum threshold current density at 80 K is 0.7 kA/cm{sup 2}, and the maximum operation temperature in pulse mode is 270 K. The waveguide loss of an InAs plasmon waveguide is estimated, and the factors that determine the operation temperature are discussed.

Authors:
; ;  [1]
  1. Laboratory for Nanoelectronics and Semiconductor Spintronics, Research Institute of Electrical Communication, Tohoku University, Katahira 2-1-1, Aoba-ku, Sendai (Japan)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
20706426
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 87; Journal Issue: 21; Other Information: DOI: 10.1063/1.2136428; (c) 2005 American Institute of Physics; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; ALUMINIUM COMPOUNDS; CRYSTAL GROWTH; CURRENT DENSITY; GALLIUM ANTIMONIDES; INDIUM ARSENIDES; LASERS; MOLECULAR BEAM EPITAXY; OSCILLATOR STRENGTHS; PLASMONS; SEMICONDUCTOR MATERIALS; SUBSTRATES; SUPERLATTICES; TEMPERATURE DEPENDENCE; TEMPERATURE RANGE 0065-0273 K; THRESHOLD CURRENT; WAVEGUIDES

Citation Formats

Ohtani, K., Fujita, K., and Ohno, H. Mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers. United States: N. p., 2005. Web. doi:10.1063/1.2136428.
Ohtani, K., Fujita, K., & Ohno, H. Mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers. United States. doi:10.1063/1.2136428.
Ohtani, K., Fujita, K., and Ohno, H. Mon . "Mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers". United States. doi:10.1063/1.2136428.
@article{osti_20706426,
title = {Mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers},
author = {Ohtani, K. and Fujita, K. and Ohno, H.},
abstractNote = {We report on the demonstration of mid-infrared InAs/AlGaSb superlattice quantum-cascade lasers operating at 10 {mu}m. The laser structures are grown on n-InAs (100) substrate by solid-source molecular-beam epitaxy. An InAs/AlGaSb chirped superlattice structure providing a large oscillator strength and fast carrier depopulation is employed as the active part. The observed minimum threshold current density at 80 K is 0.7 kA/cm{sup 2}, and the maximum operation temperature in pulse mode is 270 K. The waveguide loss of an InAs plasmon waveguide is estimated, and the factors that determine the operation temperature are discussed.},
doi = {10.1063/1.2136428},
journal = {Applied Physics Letters},
number = 21,
volume = 87,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Nov 21 00:00:00 EST 2005},
month = {Mon Nov 21 00:00:00 EST 2005}
}
  • The authors report on above-room-temperature operation of InAs/AlGaSb quantum cascade lasers emitting at 12 {mu}m. The laser structures are grown on a n-InAs (100) substrate using solid-source molecular beam epitaxy. An InAs/AlGaSb superlattice is used as an active part and an InAs double plasmon waveguide is used for optical confinement. Results show that increased doping concentration in the injection part of the active region expands the current operation range of the devices, allowing laser operation at and above room temperature. The observed threshold current density is 4.0 kA/cm{sup 2} at 300 K; the maximum operation temperature is 340 K.
  • Band structure properties of the type-II W-design AlSb/InAs/GaIn(As)Sb/InAs/AlSb quantum wells have been investigated theoretically in a systematic manner and with respect to their use in the active region of interband cascade laser for a broad range of emission in mid infrared between below 3 to beyond 10 μm. Eight-band k·p approach has been utilized to calculate the electronic subbands. The fundamental optical transition energy and the corresponding oscillator strength have been determined in function of the thickness of InAs and GaIn(As)Sb layers and the composition of the latter. There have been considered active structures on two types of relevant substrates, GaSbmore » and InAs, introducing slightly modified strain conditions. Additionally, the effect of external electric field has been taken into account to simulate the conditions occurring in the operational devices. The results show that introducing arsenic as fourth element into the valence band well of the type-II W-design system, and then altering its composition, can efficiently enhance the transition oscillator strength and allow additionally increasing the emission wavelength, which makes this solution prospective for improved performance and long wavelength interband cascade lasers.« less
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  • In space communications, atmospheric absorption and Rayleigh scattering are the dominant channel impairments. Transmission using mid-infrared (MIR) wavelengths offers the benefits of lower loss and less scintillation effects. In this work, we report the telecom wavelengths (1.55 μm and 1.3 μm) induced optical quenching effects on MIR quantum cascade lasers (QCLs), when QCLs are operated well above their thresholds. The QCL output power can be near 100% quenched using 20 mW of near-infrared (NIR) power, and the quenching effect depends on the input NIR intensity as well as wavelength. Time resolved measurement was conducted to explore the quenching mechanism. The measured recovery timemore » is around 14 ns, which indicates that NIR generated electron-hole pairs may play a key role in the quenching process. The photocarrier created local field and band bending can effectively deteriorate the dipole transition matrix element and quench the QCL. As a result, MIR QCLs can be used as an optical modulator and switch controlled by NIR lasers. They can also be used as “converters” to convert telecom optical signals into MIR optical signals.« less
  • We demonstrate quantum cascade lasers in the InAs/AlSb material system emitting at wavelengths of λ = 19 μm and λ = 21 μm. The maximum operating temperatures are 291 K and 250 K, and the threshold current densities at 78 K are as low as 0.6 kA/cm{sup 2} and 1.3 kA/cm{sup 2} for the lasers emitting at λ = 19 μm and λ = 21 μm, respectively. These values represent the best performance to date for quantum cascade lasers operating above λ = 16 μm. Although the devices employ metal-metal waveguide geometries, the diffraction effects which typically hinder the output beam of THz devices are not observed.