The epitaxial growth of quantum rods (QRs) on GaAs was investigated. It was found that GaAs thickness in the GaAs/InAs superlattice used for QR formation plays a key role in improving the QR structural properties. Increasing the GaAs thickness results in both an increased In compositional contrast between the QRs and surrounding layer, and an increased QR length. QRs with an aspect ratio of up to 10 were obtained, representing quasiquantum wires in a GaAs matrix. Due to modified confinement and strain potential, such nanostructure is promising for controlling gain polarization. c 2008 American Institute of Physics. [DOI: 10.1063/1.3032544]