We report on high Al-content AlGaN-based deep UV emitter structures grown over single crystal, slightly off c-axis (5.8 degrees) bulk AlN substrates. AlN/AlGaN multiple quantum well (MQW) structures with up to 50% of Al in the well material were grown by using low-pressure MOCVD and characterized by using X-ray, AFM, SEM and photoluminescence techniques. Two light sources, one at 213 nm wavelength for selective excitation of quantum well layers and another one at 193 nm to excite both wells and barriers, were exploited. A weak temperature dependence (from 8 K to 300 K) of the luminescence intensity and the absence of blue-shift of the luminescence peak with increasing excitation intensity pointed to a low density of localized states, in a good agreement with the X-ray data, which indicated very high quality of these MQW structures.
The most striking result was observation of stimulated emission at wavelength as short as 258 nm in Al0.5Ga0.5N/AlN MQWs grown on bulk AlN single crystals.