A Caltech Library Service

Part 1: Longitudinal static and dynamic effects in semiconductor lasers. Part II: Spectral characteristics of passively mode-locked quantum well lasers


Schrans, Thomas (1994) Part 1: Longitudinal static and dynamic effects in semiconductor lasers. Part II: Spectral characteristics of passively mode-locked quantum well lasers. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/6fvd-ez10.


In the first part of this thesis a study of the effect of the longitudinal distribution of optical intensity and electron density on the static and dynamic behavior of semiconductor lasers is performed. A static model for above threshold operation of a single mode laser, consisting of multiple active and passive sections, is developed by calculating the longitudinal optical intensity distribution and electron density distribution in a self-consistent manner. Feedback from an index and gain Bragg grating is included, as well as feedback from discrete reflections at interfaces and facets. Longitudinal spatial holeburning is analyzed by including the dependence of the gain and the refractive index on the electron density. The mechanisms of spatial holeburning in quarter wave shifted DFB lasers are analyzed. A new laser structure with a uniform optical intensity distribution is introduced and an implementation is simulated, resulting in a large reduction of the longitudinal spatial holeburning effect.

A dynamic small-signal model is then developed by including the optical intensity and electron density distribution, as well as the dependence of the grating coupling coefficients on the electron density. Expressions are derived for the intensity and frequency noise spectrum, the spontaneous emission rate into the lasing mode, the linewidth enhancement factor, and the AM and FM modulation response. Different chirp components are identified in the FM response, and a new adiabatic chirp component is discovered. This new adiabatic chirp component is caused by the nonuniform longitudinal distributions, and is found to dominate at low frequencies. Distributed feedback lasers with partial gain coupling are analyzed, and it is shown how the dependence of the grating coupling coefficients on the electron density can result in an enhancement of the differential gain with an associated enhancement in modulation bandwidth and a reduction in chirp.

In the second part, spectral characteristics of passively mode-locked two-section multiple quantum well laser coupled to an external cavity are studied. Broad-band wavelength tuning using an external grating is demonstrated for the first time in passively mode-locked semiconductor lasers. A record tuning range of 26 nm is measured, with pulse widths of typically a few picosecond and time-bandwidth products of more than 10 times the transform limit. It is then demonstrated that these large time-bandwidth products are due to a strong linear upchirp, by performing pulse compression by a factor of 15 to a record pulse widths as low 320 fs.

A model for pulse propagation through a saturable medium with self-phase-modulation, due to the a-parameter, is developed for quantum well material, including the frequency dependence of the gain medium. This model is used to simulate two-section devices coupled to an external cavity. When no self-phase-modulation is present, it is found that the pulses are asymmetric with a sharper rising edge, that the pulse tails have an exponential behavior, and that the transform limit is 0.3. Inclusion of self-phase-modulation results in a linear upchirp imprinted on the pulse after each round-trip. This linear upchirp is due to a combination of self-phase-modulation in a gain section and absorption of the leading edge of the pulse in the saturable absorber.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Electrical Engineering
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Electrical Engineering
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Yariv, Amnon
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:23 May 1994
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Belgian American Educational Foundation fellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:04192013-141541657
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7619
Deposited By: Dan Anguka
Deposited On:22 Apr 2013 16:55
Last Modified:16 Apr 2021 23:06

Thesis Files

PDF - Final Version
See Usage Policy.


Repository Staff Only: item control page