Following a review of ring resonator research in the past decade we shall report a novel bi-level etching technique that permits the use of standard photolithography for coupling to deeply-etched ring resonator structures. The technique is employed to demonstrate InGaAsP laterally- coupled racetrack ring resonators laser with record low threshold currents of 66 mA. The racetrack laser have curved sections of 150 micrometers radius with negligible bending loss. The lasers operate CW single mode up to nearly twice threshold with a 26 dB side-mode-suppression ratio. We shall also present a transfer matrix formalism for the analysis of ring resonator arrays and indicate application examples for flat band filter synthesis.