We present an experimental study of the physical process that leads to spatially incoherent, nonmodal emission in broad-area vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers. We show that this special emission regime that occurs in pulsed operation of these lasers is due to a combination of a spatially distributed thermal or refractive index gradient (thermal lens) and thermal expansion of the cavity during the pulse (thermal chirp). Our measurements are based on preinstalling a thermal lens through a current bias, and subsequently, modulating a pulse onto the bias. This approach allows us to independently investigate the role of both thermal effects in the onset of nonmodal emission. © 2006 IEEE.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics|
|Publication status||Published - May 2009|
- Semiconductor laser
- Spatial coherence
- Thermal effects
- Vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL)