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19 June 1995 Surface-emitting semiconductor laser for intracavity spectroscopy and microscopy
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We demonstrate lasing action in a novel microcavity laser which can be utilized for intracavity spectroscopy as well as high contrast imaging of small (approximately 10 micrometers ) structures. The system can be easily visualized as a Fabry-Perot cavity containing a gain media and an object for study. Since the primary constraint on the object is transparency at the lasing wavelength, investigation of lasing in objects such as microspheres, liquid droplets, and biological cells is possible. The resonator consists of an epitaxial MBE grown mirror and gain region on a GaAs wafer. This is essentially an open-cavity vertical cavity surface emitting laser. The object to be studied is placed on the wafer and covered with a glass dielectric mirror which acts as the output coupler. When the semiconductor gain region is photo- pumped, the object within the cavity provides lateral optical confinement through its index difference with the surrounding media, increases the cavity Q, and thus encourages lasing action. The emitted laser light can be spectrally and spatially resolved. The narrow lasing lines can provide information about the lasing modes supported and the size of the object. The spatially resolved laser light provides high contrast microscopic images of the electromagnetic modes oscillating in the resonator. We present an investigation of stable lasing modes in polystyrene spheres.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Ken E. Meissner, Paul Lee Gourley, Thomas M. Brennan, B. Eugene Hammons, and Anthony E. McDonald "Surface-emitting semiconductor laser for intracavity spectroscopy and microscopy", Proc. SPIE 2399, Physics and Simulation of Optoelectronic Devices III, (19 June 1995);

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