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Title: Room temperature negative differential resistance in terahertz quantum cascade laser structures

Abstract

The mechanisms that limit the temperature performance of GaAs/Al{sub 0.15}GaAs-based terahertz quantum cascade lasers (THz-QCLs) have been identified as thermally activated LO-phonon scattering and leakage of charge carriers into the continuum. Consequently, the combination of highly diagonal optical transition and higher barriers should significantly reduce the adverse effects of both mechanisms and lead to improved temperature performance. Here, we study the temperature performance of highly diagonal THz-QCLs with high barriers. Our analysis uncovers an additional leakage channel which is the thermal excitation of carriers into bounded higher energy levels, rather than the escape into the continuum. Based on this understanding, we have designed a structure with an increased intersubband spacing between the upper lasing level and excited states in a highly diagonal THz-QCL, which exhibits negative differential resistance even at room temperature. This result is a strong evidence for the effective suppression of the aforementioned leakage channel.

Authors:
;  [1];  [2]
  1. Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Research Laboratory of Electronics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 (United States)
  2. Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies, Sandia National Laboratories, MS 1303, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87185-1303 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22590517
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 109; Journal Issue: 8; Other Information: (c) 2016 Author(s); Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; CHARGE CARRIERS; EXCITATION; EXCITED STATES; GALLIUM ARSENIDES; LANTHANUM SELENIDES; LASERS; LEAKS; PERFORMANCE; PHONONS; SCATTERING; TEMPERATURE RANGE 0273-0400 K

Citation Formats

Albo, Asaf, E-mail: asafalbo@gmail.com, Hu, Qing, and Reno, John L. Room temperature negative differential resistance in terahertz quantum cascade laser structures. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4961617.
Albo, Asaf, E-mail: asafalbo@gmail.com, Hu, Qing, & Reno, John L. Room temperature negative differential resistance in terahertz quantum cascade laser structures. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4961617.
Albo, Asaf, E-mail: asafalbo@gmail.com, Hu, Qing, and Reno, John L. Mon . "Room temperature negative differential resistance in terahertz quantum cascade laser structures". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4961617.
@article{osti_22590517,
title = {Room temperature negative differential resistance in terahertz quantum cascade laser structures},
author = {Albo, Asaf, E-mail: asafalbo@gmail.com and Hu, Qing and Reno, John L.},
abstractNote = {The mechanisms that limit the temperature performance of GaAs/Al{sub 0.15}GaAs-based terahertz quantum cascade lasers (THz-QCLs) have been identified as thermally activated LO-phonon scattering and leakage of charge carriers into the continuum. Consequently, the combination of highly diagonal optical transition and higher barriers should significantly reduce the adverse effects of both mechanisms and lead to improved temperature performance. Here, we study the temperature performance of highly diagonal THz-QCLs with high barriers. Our analysis uncovers an additional leakage channel which is the thermal excitation of carriers into bounded higher energy levels, rather than the escape into the continuum. Based on this understanding, we have designed a structure with an increased intersubband spacing between the upper lasing level and excited states in a highly diagonal THz-QCL, which exhibits negative differential resistance even at room temperature. This result is a strong evidence for the effective suppression of the aforementioned leakage channel.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4961617},
journal = {Applied Physics Letters},
number = 8,
volume = 109,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Aug 22 00:00:00 EDT 2016},
month = {Mon Aug 22 00:00:00 EDT 2016}
}