Abstract

The role of metal apertures in the mechanism of lateral-mode confinement in vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) is clarified by means of a detailed effective-frequency-method (EFM) analysis of an oxide-confined VCSEL structure with the oxide window larger than the p-contact metal aperture. We show that a ring metal contact on top of the VCSEL structure can change the conditions for lateral waveguiding by significantly modifying the local resonant properties of the VCSEL cavity. Resonant effects are demonstrated in the longitudinal coupled-cavity system consisting of the designed laser cavity, determined by two distributed Bragg reflectors (DBRs) and a spacer, and a very short cavity formed by the top DBR and the semiconductor-metal interface. The conditions for suppression of higher order lateral modes using metal apertures are established.

© 2005 IEEE

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