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Opt Express. 2011 Jan 31;19(3):2476-84. doi: 10.1364/OE.19.002476.

Polarization switching and polarization mode hopping in quantum dot vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers.

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Department of Applied Physics and Photonics, Brussels Photonics Team B-PHOT, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, 2 Pleinlaan, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium.


We show experimentally that polarization mode hopping in quantum dot vertical cavity surface emitting lasers (VCSELs) takes place between nonorthogonal elliptically polarized modes. In contrast to quantum well VCSELs the average dwell time decreases with injection current. This decrease is by 8 orders of magnitude: from seconds to nanoseconds and is achieved without any modifications of the VCSEL internal anisotropies. The observed scaling happens in a range of currents as wide as 8 times the threshold value.

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