Short-wavelength intersubband absorption in InP-based material systems

Short-wavelength intersubband absorption in InP-based material systems

Georgiev, N.; Dekorsy, T.; Helm, M.; Semtsiv, M. P.; Masselink, W. T.; Biermann, K.; Künzel, H.

In recent years, several novel material systems (such as II-VI’s and nitrides) have been explored with the goal of achieving intersubband absorption in the 1.5 micron telecommunication wavelength region. This could lead to novel near-infrared modulators, detectors and (quantum cascade) lasers with high modulation frequencies.
We have investigated two different material systems grown on InP substrates:
(1) Heavily strained, but overall strain compensated InxGa1-xAs/AlAs/InyAl1-yAs structures grown by gas-source MBE. Here the conduction band offset between the In0.7Ga0.3As and the pure AlAs is approximately 1.23 eV.
(2) Lattice matched In0.53Ga0.47As/AlAs0.56Sb0.44 structures grown by solid-source MBE, with a conduction band offset of approximately 1.6 eV.
In both systems, absorption wavelengths shorter than 2 micron (0.62 eV photon energy) were observed. In the strained system, we investigated multiple quantum wells (MQW) as well as short-period superlattices. The absorption strength in the MQWs (Fig.1) diminishes dramatically for wells narrower than 20 Å, either due to problems in dopant activation (although the doping was put into the wells), or because the second subband has already moved into the continuum. The short-period superlattices show clear evidence of dispersive minibands as well as a small, but non-negligible s-polarized absorption. X-ray diffraction data show that the individual layers are elastically strained, with an overall strain compensation better than 0.2%.
The MQW structures of the antimonide system (modulation doped) exhibit very strong absorption, not degrading for wells down to 27 Å thickness (Fig. 2). Due to the high barriers, a wavelength shorter than 2 microns can be reached already with this thickness value.

Keywords: intersubband absorption; quantum cascade laser

  • Lecture (Conference)
    7th Int. Conference on Intersubband Transitions in Quantum Wells, 1.-5. Sept. 2003, Evolene, Switzerland (auf CD-ROM publiziert)

Publ.-Id: 5834