GaN-based superluminescent diodes with long lifetime
We report on the reliability of GaN-based super-luminescent light emitting diodes (SLEDs) emitting at a wavelength of 405 nm. We show that the Mg doping level in the p-type layers has an impact on both the device electro-optical characteristics and their reliability. Optimized doping levels allow decreasing the operating voltage on single-mode devices from more than 6 V to less than 5 V for an injection current of 100 mA. Furthermore, maximum output powers as high as 350 mW (for an injection current of 500 mA) have been achieved in continuous-wave operation (CW) at room temperature. Modules with standard and optimized p-type layers were finally tested in terms of lifetime, at a constant output power of 10 mW, in CW operation and at a case temperature of 25 degrees C. The modules with non-optimized p-type doping showed a fast and remarkable increase in the drive current during the first hundreds of hours together with an increase of the device series resistance. No degradation of the electrical characteristics was observed over 2000 h on devices with optimized p-type layers. The estimated lifetime for those devices was longer than 5000 h.