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Improvement of Catastrophic Optical Mirror Damage of Semiconductor Lasers by Preventing Carriers from being Injected into the Mirror Regions

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000112807D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-27
Document File: 2 page(s) / 57K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Bona, GL: AUTHOR [+5]

Abstract

The mirror regions of a semiconductor laser are the hottest areas of the device. This is due to non-radiative recombination of the electrons and the holes at surface states of the semiconductor which causes heat production. At a certain power level, the excessive heat leads to the physical destruction of the facet called Catastrophic Optical Mirror Damage (COMD). The technique we propose for COMD improvement is schematically shown in Fig. 1 where the facet region of a ridge waveguide laser with electroplated gold heat spreader is sketched. The difference to a conventional laser of this type is the fact, that the p-contact metal is recessed from the facet by approximately 10 mum, such, no carriers are injected into the facet regions. Fig. 1: Schematic view of a laser facet without current injection.

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Improvement of Catastrophic Optical Mirror Damage of Semiconductor
Lasers by Preventing Carriers from being Injected into the Mirror
Regions

      The mirror regions of a semiconductor laser are the hottest
areas of the device.  This is due to non-radiative recombination of
the electrons and the holes at surface states of the semiconductor
which causes heat production.  At a certain power level, the
excessive heat leads to the physical destruction of the facet called
Catastrophic Optical Mirror Damage (COMD).  The technique we propose
for COMD improvement is schematically shown in Fig. 1 where the facet
region of a ridge waveguide laser with electroplated gold heat
spreader is sketched.  The difference to a conventional laser of this
type is the fact, that the p-contact metal is recessed from the facet
by approximately 10 mum, such, no carriers are injected into the
facet regions.  Fig. 1:  Schematic view of a laser facet without
current injection.

      Visible (Al)GaInP lasers emitting at a wavelength of 690 nm
with and without p-contact recess have been fabricated on the same
epitaxial material in order to compare their COMD behavior.  The
time-to-COMD behavior is plotted in Fig. 2 for devices with 1 and 2
Quantum Wells (QW).  A lifetime of 864 hours has been measured for
conventional devices (MIR) at output powers of 35 mW (2 QW) and 37 mW
(1 QW), whereas for a device with recessed metallization (REC 1 QW)
the same lifetime is obtained at a power level...