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Epitaxial Lead Chalcogenides on Si for Mid-IR Detectors and Emitters Including Cavities

Lead chalcogenide (IV-VI narrow-gap semiconductor) layers on Si or BaF2(111) substrates are employed to realize two mid-infrared optoelectronic devices for the first time. A tunable resonant cavity enhanced detector is realized by employing a movable mirror. Tuning is across the 4 μm to 5.5 μm wavelength range, and linewidth is <0.1 μm. Due to the thin (0.3 μm) PbTe photodiode inside the cavity, a higher sensitivity at higher operating temperatures was achieved as compared to conventional thick photodiodes. The second device is an optically pumped vertical external-cavity surface-emitting laser with PbTe-based gain layers. It emits at  5 μm wavelength and with output power up to 50 mW pulsed, or 3 mW continuous wave at 100 K.

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