Terahertz ambipolar dual-wavelength quantum cascade laser

L. Lever, N. M. Hinchcliffe, S. P. Khanna, P. Dean, Z. Ikonić, C. A. Evans, A. G. Davies, P. Harrison, E. H. Linfleld, R. W. Kelsall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Terahertz frequency quantum cascade lasers (THz QCLs) are compact solid-state sources of terahertz radiation that were first demonstrated in 2002. They have a broad range of potential applications ranging from gas sensing and non-destructive testing, through to security and medical imaging, with many polycrystalline compounds having distinct fingerprint spectra in the terahertz frequency range. In this article, we demonstrate an electrically-switchable dual-wavelength THz QCL which will enable spectroscopic information to be obtained within a THz QCLbased imaging system. The device uses the same active region for both emission wavelengths: in forward bias, the laser emits at 2.3 THz; in reverse bias, it emits at 4THz. The corresponding threshold current densities are 490A/cm2 and 330 A/cm2, respectively, with maximum operating temperatures of 98 K and 120 K.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19926-19932
Number of pages7
JournalOptics Express
Issue number22
Early online date19 Oct 2009
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2009
Externally publishedYes


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