Recent Progress in GaInNAs Laser

Takeshi KITATANI  Masahiko KONDOW  Kouji NAKAHARA  Toshiaki TANAKA  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E83-C   No.6   pp.830-837
Publication Date: 2000/06/25
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: INVITED PAPER (Special Issue on Advanced Optical Devices for Next Generation High-Speed Communication Systems and Photonic Networks)
Category: Semiconductor Lasers
GaInNAs,  optical-fiber communications,  high-temperature performance,  characteristic temperate,  

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Our recent progress in improving the performance of the GaInNAs laser is fully reviewed here. We improved the crystal quality of GaInNAs by optimizing the conditions for its grown by gas-source molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) using N radicals as a N source. We found that the temperature window for obtaining GaInNAs with high crystal quality, good surface morphology, and good photoluminescence (PL) characteristics is smaller than that for obtaining this kind of GaInAs. Like dopant atoms such as Si or Be in GaAs, the N radicals produced by an RF discharge have a high sticking coefficient. Their use is therefore effective when we want to increase and control the N content of GaInNAs. We found that the AsH3-flow-rate mainly affected crystal quality of GaInNAs rather than incorporation of nitrogen atoms. We also investigated the effects of thermal annealing on the optical properties of as-grown GaInNAs layers and found that it greatly increased the PL intensity and produced the large shift in the PL wavelength. The absorption spectra of the GaInNAs bulk layer revealed that the large shift in the PL wavelength is probably caused by a bandgap shift in the GaInNAs well layer, and cathodeluminescence measurements revealed that the increased PL intensity is due to the improved emission being more uniform spatially: uniformity from the entire region; in comparison, nonuniform dot-like regions exist in an as-grown GaInNAs layer. Optimizing the growth conditions and using thermal annealing effect, we made a 1.3-µm GaInNAs/GaAs single-quantum-well laser that has a high characteristic temperature (215 K) under pulsed operation. To our knowledge, this is the highest characteristic temperature reported for a 1.3-µm band-edge emitter suitable for used in optical-fiber communication systems. The use of GaInNAs as an active layer is, therefore, very promising for the fabrication of long-wavelength laser diodes with excellent high-temperature performance.