8 February 2012 Physics of failure investigation in high-power broad-area InGaAs-AlGaAs strained quantum well lasers
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Abstract
Continued improvements in broad-area InGaAs-AlGaAs strained quantum well (QW) lasers have led to unprecedented performance characteristics in these lasers including optical output powers of over 20 W and power conversion efficiencies of over 70% under CW operation. Catastrophic optical mirror damage (COMD) is responsible for failures in (Al)GaAs QW lasers, but InGaAs-AlGaAs strained QW lasers with optimized facet passivation predominantly fail by catastrophic optical bulk damage (COBD). Since COBD is relatively a new failure type, it requires physics of failure investigation to understand its root causes and then develop COBD-free lasers for high reliability applications including potential satellite systems. We recently proposed a model for degradation mechanism responsible the COBD process and this paper further investigates the root causes of COBD in the lasers using various failure mode analysis techniques. We investigated reliability and degradation mechanism in MOCVD-grown broad-area InGaAs-AlGaAs strained QW single emitters. During entire accelerated life-tests of the lasers we studied, time resolved electroluminescence (TR-EL) techniques were employed to observe formation of a hot spot and subsequent formation and progression of dark spots and dark lines through windowed n-contacts.
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Yongkun Sin, Stephen D. LaLumondiere, Nathan Presser, Brendan J. Foran, Neil A. Ives, William T. Lotshaw, Steven C. Moss, "Physics of failure investigation in high-power broad-area InGaAs-AlGaAs strained quantum well lasers", Proc. SPIE 8241, High-Power Diode Laser Technology and Applications X, 824116 (8 February 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.906436; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.906436
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