Terahertz photonic crystal quantum cascade lasers
We combine photonic crystal and quantum cascade band engineering to create an in-plane laser at terahertz frequency. We demonstrate that such photonic crystal lasers strongly improve the performances of terahertz quantum cascade material in terms of threshold current, waveguide losses, emission mode selection, tunability and maximum operation temperature. The laser operates in a slow-light regime between the M saddle point and K band-edge in reciprocal lattice. Coarse frequency control of half of a terahertz is achieved by lithographically tuning the photonic crystal period. Thanks to field assisted gain shift and cavity pulling, the single mode emission is continuously tuned over 30 GHz. (c) 2007 Optical Society of America.