Defect Analysis and Thermal Effects of Nanolasers and Emitters


DATENE is a project focusing on defect analysis and thermal effects of nanolasers and emitters. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska–Curie grant agreement No 844541.

The principal investigator is Pengyan Wen, and the host institution is IBM Research GmbH, which is an industrial research laboratory located in Rüschlikon, Switzerland.

DATENE started in March 2020 and ran to February 2022.

The project addresses these two great challenges in integrated photonics:

  1. Micro- and nanoscale thermal management of active III-V lasers on Si – by a combination of in-situ thermal characterization and thermal simulation.
  2. Defect analysis of III/V nanoscale photonic devices – morphological and device characterization to understand the impact of defects on device performance and self-heating.

The project explores the application of the scanning thermal microscopy (SThM) and micro-Raman in micro- and nanoscale thermal characterization on III–V nanolasers and emitters. We are also using thermal simulations to validate the experimental results and to study the defect-related self-heating issues in these devices.

One of the first milestones of the project was the systematic thermal analysis of InP-on-Si micro- and nanocavity lasers based on steady-state and transient thermal simulations and experimental analysis. We investigated the use of metal cavities for improving the thermal properties of InP-on-Si micro- and nanocavity lasers which reveal a temperature reduction of hundreds of kelvins for the metal-clad cavity by both simulation and micro-Raman characterization. Transient simulations are carried out and the results show that the presence of a metal cladding not only increases the overall efficiency in heat dissipation, but also causes a much faster temperature response.

Nanosquare cavities and temperature profiles from simulation
Nanosquare cavities and temperature profiles from simulation

Another milestone in this project is the nanoscale thermal analysis on III-V photodiodes monolithically integrated on Si. In this case, we use the SThM for nanoscale thermal characterization and use ANSYS APDL for thermal simulations.

In this project, we are also doing collaboration work with Prof. A. Schenk and Dr. Q. Ding from ETHZ on 3D thermo-electrical simulation to investigate the defect-related self-heating effects in the III-V photodiodes

Graphics from simulation and SThM
T-shape PIN photodiode and temperature profiles from simulation and SThM