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Research Pinpoints Benefits of Varying Size and Shape of Classical VCSELs

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A study conducted by the Bimberg Chinese-German Center for Green Photonics, Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics, and Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences reported on the progress on multi-aperture VCSELs. The study showed that the development of such devices has created performance advantages such as larger temperature rollover, larger output power, and larger f3dB (the decisive parameter determining the bit-rate of communication).

The design of the multi-aperture VCSEL is based on fabricating oxidized apertures of varied shapes from multiple etched blind holes, of any geometric arrangements. After oxidation, the blind holes are filled with metal. The metal-filled holes efficiently remove heat from the device and allow low resistance current injection to the active area.

Therefore, the device is able to operate across a range of temperatures and higher frequencies.  

The concept for the multi-aperture VCSELs introduced in the current work required a complete redesign to realize the target device. Classical VCSELs with a narrow oxide aperture show single-mode emission at discrete wavelengths, resulting in small output powers. A novel multi-aperture VCSEL design with n number of apertures can produce n number single-mode emission at the same discrete wavelength with n times the output power, lower operating temperature of the active area, and larger f3dB when compared with the classical VCSEL design.

Another advantage of the novel design is single-mode emission with significantly increased output power, which is able to extend single-mode communication distance up to a kilometer. Tuning the aperture shape away from a circular shape will result in polarized emission.

The researchers said that single-mode or multimode, multi-aperture VCSELs will exhibit smaller series resistance than current classical VCSELs. This will make the proposed device easy to drive using novel high-speed CMOS driver circuits, and the module’s energy consumption is also much lower than classical VCSELs.

The research was published in IEEE Xplore (

Photonics Handbook
An opening or hole through which radiation or matter may pass.
Research & Technologylasersvertical cavity surface emitting laserVCSELOutput Powersingle mode emissionChangchun Institute of OpticsBimberg Chinese-German Center for Green PhotonicsChinese Academy of SciencesaperturedesignAsia-PacificEuropeIEEE Xplore

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