Many organic molecules have strong and narrow absorption features in the middle Infrared (mid-IR) spectral range. The ability to directly probe absorption features of molecules enables numerous mid-IR applications in non-invasive medical diagnosis, industrial processing and process control, environmental monitoring, etc. Thus, there is a strong demand for lasers operating in mid-IR spectral range. Transition metal (TM) doped II-VI semiconductors such as Fe/Cr:ZnSe/S are the material of choice for fabrication of mid-IR gain media due to favorable combination of properties: a four level energy structure, absence of excited state absorption , broad mid-IR vibronic absorption and emission bands. Despite the significant progress in post-growth thermal diffusion technology of TM:II-VI fabrication there are still some difficulties associated with diffusion of certain TM’s in these materials. In this work we address the issue of poor diffusion of Fe in ZnSe/S polycrystals. It is well known that with the temperature increase the diffusion rate of impurity also increases. However, simple application of high temperatures during the diffusion process is problematic for ZnSe/S crystals due to their strong sublimation. The sublimation processes can be suppressed by application of high pressures. Hot isostatic pressing was utilized as the means for simultaneous application of high temperatures (1300°C) and high pressures (1000atm, 3000atm). It was determined that diffusion coefficient of Fe was improved 13 and 14 fold in ZnSe and ZnS, respectively, as compared to the standard diffusion at 950°C. The difference in diffusion coefficients can be due to strong increase in the grain size of polycrystals.
Ozarfar Gafarov, Alan Martinez, Vladimir Fedorov, and Sergey Mirov, "Enhancement of Fe diffusion in ZnSe/S laser crystals under hot isostatic pressing," Proc. SPIE 10082, Solid State Lasers XXVI: Technology and Devices, 1008213 (Presented at SPIE LASE: February 01, 2017; Published: 17 February 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2252337.
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