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Title: Ultrafast dynamics in InAs quantum dot and GaInNAs quantum well semiconductor heterostructures
Author: Malins, David B.
Awarding Body: University of St Andrews
Current Institution: University of St Andrews
Date of Award: 2008
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The quantum confined Stark effect (QCSE) and ultrafast absorption dynamics near the bandedge have been investigated in p-i-n waveguides comprising quantum confined heterostructures grown on GaAs substrates, for emission at 1.3um. The materials are; isolated InAs/InGaAs dot-in-a-well (DWELL) quantum dots (QD), bilayer InAs quantum dots and GaInNAs multiple quantum wells (MQW). The focus was to investigate these dynamics in a planar waveguide geometry, for the purpose of large scale integration in optical systems. Initial measurements of the QCSE using photocurrent measurements showed a small shift for isolated QDs whilst a significant shift of 40nm (at 1340nm) was demonstrated for bilayer dots, comparable to that of GaInNAs MWQ (30nm at 1300nm). These are comparable to InP based quaternary multiple quantum wells used in modulator devices. With the use of a broadband continuum source the isolated quantum dots exhibit both a small QCSE (15nm at 1280nm) and minimal broadening which is desirable for saturable absorbers used in monolithic modelocked semiconductor lasers (MMSL). A robust experimental set-up was developed for characterising waveguide modulators whilst the electroabsorption and electro-refraction was calculated (dn=1.5x10⠻³) using the Kramers-Kronig dispersion relation. Pump probe measurements were performed at room temperature using 250fs pulses from an optical parametric oscillator (OPO) on the three waveguide samples. For the isolated QDs ultrafast absorption recovery was recorded from 62ps (0V) to 700fs (-10V and the shortest times shown to be due to tunneling. Additionally we have shown good agreement of the temperature dependence of these dots and the pulse width durations from a modelocked semiconductor laser using the same material. Bilayer QDs are shown to exhibit ultrafast absorption recovery from 119ps (0V) to 5ps (-10V) offering potential for applications as modelocking elements. The GaInNAs multiple quantum wells show absorption recovery of 55ps (0V), however under applied reverse bias they exhibit long lived field screening transients. These results are explained qualitatively by the spatial separation of electrons and holes at heterobarrier interfaces.
Supervisor: Miller, Alan Sponsor: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Quantum dot ; Quantum well ; Semiconductor ; Quantum confined Stark effect ; QC611.6Q35M2 ; Semiconductor lasers ; Semiconductors--Materials ; Picosecond pulses ; Heterostructures ; Quantum dots ; Quantum wells