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Long-Term Reliable, High-Power Midwave-Infrared Quantum Cascade Lasers

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W911NF-16-C-0116
Agency Tracking Number: A2-6480
Amount: $1,549,984.86
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: A10A-T007
Solicitation Number: 10.A
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2016
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2016-09-07
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2021-01-24
Small Business Information
200 N. Prospect Ave.
Madison, WI 53726
United States
DUNS: 829814925
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Thomas Earles
 Director of Product Development
 (608) 347-2144
Business Contact
 Lynda Botez
Phone: (608) 231-3432
Research Institution

Intraband, LLC has invented and demonstrated quantum-cascade-laser (QCL) structures that both suppress carrier leakage and have efficient carrier extraction, so-called step-taper active-region (STA) QCLs. As a result, record-high internal efficiencies have been obtained, which are 30-40 % higher than conventional QCLs. Consequently, these midwave infrared (MWIR) semiconductor lasers have potential for much higher wallplug-efficiency values than conventional QCLs and much less heating under quasi-CW or CW operation. The STA design also reduces performance sensitivity to device temperature rise, which lessens the thermal management burden on systems using these lasers in real-world situations. In this program Intraband will engineer these QCLs for reliability. The effort will include optimizing the QCL chips and die bonding methods for reliable high-power operation. The primary goals of the program are to: (a) study QCL failure modes during watt-range quasi-CW and/or CW operation and determine a model of the lifetest acceleration factors; (b) Carry out lifetests with the goal of achieving stable operation of QCLs, nominally emitting at 4.6 microns, for at least 1000 hours at 1 W average-power. These results can then be applied to more advanced designs, like QCL phase-locked arrays and grating coupled surface emitters, which are a proven technologies for power scaling.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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