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1.5 micron range emission has been realized using the InAs quantum dots embedded into the metamorphic InGaAs layer containing 20% of InAs grown by MBE on a GaAs substrate. Growth regimes were optimized to reduce significantly the density of dislocations propagating into the active layer from the lattice mismatched interface. 2 mm long InGaAs/InGaAlAs lasers with 10 planes of quantum dots in the active region showed threshold current density about 1.4 kA/cm2 with the external differential efficiency as high as 38%. Lasing wavelength depends on the optical loss being in the 1.44–1.49 micron range at room temperature. On increasing the temperature the wavelength reaches 1.515 micron at 85C while the threshold current characteristic temperature of 55–60K was estimated. High internal quantum efficiency (η>60%)and low internal losses (α=3–4 cm ) were realized. Maximum room temperature output power in pulsed regime as high as 5.5 W for 100 micron wide stripe was demonstrated. Using the same concept 1.3 micron InGaAs/InGaAlAs quantum well lasers were fabricated. The active region contained quantum wells with high (∼40%) indium content which was possible due to the intermediate InGaAs strain relaxation layer. 1 mm stripe lasers showed room temperature threshold current densities about 3.3 kA/cm (λ=1.29 micron) and 400 A/cm2 at 85K. Thus, the use of metamorphic InGaAs layers on GaAs substrate is a very promising approach for increasing the emission wavelength of GaAs based lasers.
Transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and photoluminescence (PL) have been used to evaluate defects and the efficiency of defect-reduction techniques in structures with InAs quantum dots (QDs) for the 1.55 µm range grown at low substrate temperature (LT) using molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). We show that capping of the QDs with thin GaAs layer accompanied by growth interruption at 600oC (flash) allows to eliminate large islands, containing dislocations, while the smaller islands containing local defects (e.g. dislocation dipoles) still remain. If the flash procedure is accompanied with further depositing of thin AlAs cap layer, and followed by high temperature (~700oC) annealing (HTA), an almost complete elimination of defects is observed. The structures emit in the range of 1.55 µm due to lateral agglomerates of LTQDs. Simultaneously bright luminescence due to isolated QDs and GaAs matrix are detected at high excitation densities.
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