The fabrication and the studies of sol gel-microcavities strongly doped with CdSe nanocristals are presented. The Fabry-Perot microcavities are fabricated by a Distributed Bragg Reflectors which is covered with an active layer and a silver mirror. The matrix of the doped layer is the ZrO2 material. These microcavities are characterized by reflectometry. The resonant peak is enlarged when his spectral position corresponds to their first absorption line. This means a strong interaction between the narrow peak of the cavity mode and the large first absorption line of the nanocrystals.
The fabrication and the optical properties of sol-gel high quality DBRs and microcavities are described and the emission of the europium ions included in the cavity observed. The microcavities are constituted of an SiO2 half wave Eu3+ doped active layer inserted between two sol-gel Bragg reflectors. These reflectors are formed by a stack of alternated quarter wave films of SiO2 and TiO2. Films were deposited by a dip coating method. To fabricate high quality Bragg mirrors, a large number of layers has to be stacked, but sol gel thin layers develop internal stresses during the drying and firing processes, leading to defects and cracks into the stacked films. The study of the stresses in the layers shows that a short 900°C layer annealing solves this problem and the number of stacked layers can be greater than 60 without cracks. A microcavity with 7 doublets Bragg mirrors has been fabricated using this process. Eu3+ luminescence modification due to the cavity effect, intensity enhancement and modification of the lineshape, has been observed, showing a cavity quality factor of 1200. The reflectivity factor of the associated Bragg mirrors reaches 99.8% for seven alternated SiO2/TiO2 layers.