Polarization characteristics, control, and modulation of vertical-cavity surface emitting lasers

Kent D. Choquette, Kevin L. Lear, Richard P. Schneider, R. E. Leibenguth, J. J. Figiel, S. P. Kilcoyne, Mary Hagerott Crawford, John C. Zolper

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The gain-dependent polarization properties of vertical-cavity surface emitting lasers and methods for polarization control and modulation are discussed. The partitioning of power between the two orthogonal eigen polarizations is shown to depend upon the relative spectral alignment of the nondegenerate polarization cavity resonances with the laser gain spectrum. A dominant polarization can thus be maintained by employing a blue-shifted offset of the peak laser gain relative to the cavity resonance wavelength. Alternatively, the polarization can be controlled through use of anisotropic transverse cavity geometries. The orthogonal eigen polarizations are also shown to enable polarization modulation. By exploiting polarization switching transitions in cruciform lasers, polarization modulation of the fundamental mode up to 50 MHz is demonstrated. At lower modulation frequencies, complementary digital polarized output or frequency doubling of the polarized output is obtained. Control and manipulation of vertical-cavity laser polarization may prove valuable for present and future applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
PublisherSociety of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)0819417297, 9780819417299
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes
EventLaser Diodes and Applications - San Jose, CA, USA
Duration: Feb 8 1995Feb 10 1995

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherLaser Diodes and Applications
CitySan Jose, CA, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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