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Proceedings Paper

Semiconductor microcavity light-emitting structures
Author(s): Igor Vurgaftman; Jasprit Singh
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Paper Abstract

Over the last decade considerable advances have been made in the area of semiconductor lasers as a result of tailoring the electronic structure of the active medium. This has been accomplished through the use of quantum confinement and built-in strain. There has been less emphasis on altering the photonic properties to improve laser performance. In this paper we examine the potential of a surface-emitting microcavity structure with submicron lateral dimensions for improving laser performance. We find that as the lateral dimensions are decreased, the photon density of states starts to change. In particular, strongly resonant states associated with Bragg reflection begin to dominate the photon spectrum. By placing the resonance peak close to the gain peak in the active quantum well region, a number of laser properties can be altered. The dimensions at which the changes start to be significant is about (lambda) /na, where na is the refractive index of the active region. A study of how the threshold current, dynamic characteristics and laser linewidth change as a function of the microcavity dimensions is presented. Our studies show that the spontaneous emission factor (beta) approaches a value of approximately equals 0.5 for small structures with high mirror reflectivities. This in turn results in essentially zero threshold lasing for a microcavity with lateral dimensions < 0.3 micrometers (for emission at 1.3 eV). The laser linewidth increases as (beta) decreases, but the increase is not proportional to (beta) , and even for small structures, the linewidth is expected to be in the range of 100 MHz to 1 GHz, which may be adequate for many applications. The -3 dB response of the 0.3 micrometers laser exceeds 40 GHz.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 April 1995
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 2397, Optoelectronic Integrated Circuit Materials, Physics, and Devices, (24 April 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.206897
Show Author Affiliations
Igor Vurgaftman, Univ. of Michigan (United States)
Jasprit Singh, Univ. of Michigan (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2397:
Optoelectronic Integrated Circuit Materials, Physics, and Devices
Manijeh Razeghi; Yoon-Soo Park; Gerald L. Witt, Editor(s)

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