We have developed a convenient photoluminescence microimaging technique to probe misfit dislocations in epitaxially grown semiconductor alloys and multilayers. Using this technique, we have examined the microscopic optical quality of thick (~ 1 μm ) III-V semiconductor epitaxial layers, mismatched to their substrates. The layers includeseveral kinds of  strained-layer superlattices (GaP/GaAsxP1-x on GaP and GaAs/GaAs. P on GaAs grown by MOCVD, and GaAs/In Ga1-x As on GaAs grown by MBE) and associated alloys. For each type of superlalti e, we have studied a large number of samples corresponding to different compositions and layer thicknesses. The results show that misfit dislocations can be completely eliminated in the uppermost layers of the strained-layer superlattices if these structures have thin layers, less than the critical thickness for elastic accommodation, and sufficient numbers of interfaces to block threading dislocations.