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  • Naval Research Laboratory Develops Quantum Well Lasers

Photonics Spectra
Sep 1998
Scientists at the Naval Research Laboratory's Optical Science Div. have developed several types of semiconductor lasers that emit light in the mid-infrared.
One of the secrets behind the design is a new capability called "wavefunction engineering" that enables the team to design complex layered quantum well structures. The structures are based on the antimonide family of III-V semiconductors and are grown by molecular beam epitaxy. One laser incorporates a gallium indium antimonide hole quantum well, sandwiched between two indium arsenide electron quantum wells and aluminum antimonide quantum barriers. The researchers say the new IR laser (emitting between 3 and 5 µm) could prove useful for chemical sensing, protection against heat-seeking missiles, laser surgery and laser radar.

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