A technique is reported which allows the observation of intersubband spontaneous emission in unipolar quantum-cascade lasers above threshold. The technique consists of cleaving the laser stripe in the direction perpendicular to its facets. This does not negatively affect the operation of the lasers thanks to their unipolar nature. To show the potential of the method, we apply it to superlattice quantum-cascade (QC) lasers with various active region designs. We directly observe the saturation of the luminescence intensity at the laser transition, and a bottleneck effect for transitions separated from the lasing one by less than one optical phonon. This technique should help in the optimization of QC lasers.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)