Publication # 049

P. W. Smith, Y. Silberberg and D. A. B. Miller, "Mode Locking of Semiconductor Diode Lasers Using Saturable Excitonic Nonlinearities," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B2, 1228-1236 (1985).

Multiple-quantum-well (MQW) structures of GaAs and GaAlAs have been used for passive mode locking of commercial GaAs semiconductor diode lasers. The authors present an extended discussion of this application of the sensitive room-temperature excitonic absorption saturation in MQW material. They review the criteria for passive mode locking and discuss two methods-carrier diffusion and proton bombardment-for reducing the absorption recovery time without destroying the excitonic nonlinearity. A simple probabilistic theory is derived for the effect of bombardment on the excitonic effects that is in order-of-magnitude agreement with experiment. The authors have performed experiments using MQW material to mode lock a GaAs laser. A continuous train of pulses as narrow as 1.6 psec has been obtained with a pulse-repetition rate of 2 GHz

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