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Continuous-wave biexciton lasing at room temperature using solution-processed quantum wells

Abstract

Solution-processed inorganic and organic materials have been pursued for more than a decade as low-threshold, high-gain lasing media, motivated in large part by their tunable optoelectronic properties and ease of synthesis and processing1. Although both have demonstrated stimulated emission and lasing, they have not yet approached the continuous-wave pumping regime1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8. Two-dimensional CdSe colloidal nanosheets combine the advantage of solution synthesis with the optoelectronic properties of epitaxial two-dimensional quantum wells. Here, we show that these colloidal quantum wells possess large exciton and biexciton binding energies of 132 meV and 30 meV, respectively, giving rise to stimulated emission from biexcitons at room temperature. Under femtosecond pulsed excitation, close-packed thin films yield an ultralow stimulated emission threshold of 6 μJ cm–2, sufficient to achieve continuous-wave pumped stimulated emission, and lasing when these layers are embedded in surface-emitting microcavities.

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Figure 1: Structural and optical CQwell properties.
Figure 2: Power-dependent and time-resolved photoluminescence data.
Figure 3: Stimulated emission under femtosecond and c.w. pumped conditions.
Figure 4: Continuous-wave lasing in a CQwell-based microcavity at room temperature.

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Acknowledgements

The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Program (FP7/2007-2013, under grant agreement no. 298022, NIRPLANA) and the CARIPLO Foundation (NANOCRYSLAS). M. Scotto is thanked for valuable technical assistance.

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Contributions

J.Q.G., F.D.S. and I.M. conceived the experiments. S.C. synthesized the CdSe CQwells and measured the optical properties of the CQwells in solution. J.Q.G. and I.M. performed the ultrafast optical spectroscopy and lasing experiments. J.Q.G., S.C. and F.D.S. fabricated the microcavity devices, with F.D.S and R.K. performing structural characterization. J.Q.G., R.C., L.M. and I.M. analysed and interpreted the data. J.Q.G. and I.M wrote the manuscript, with contributions from all authors.

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Correspondence to Iwan Moreels.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Grim, J., Christodoulou, S., Di Stasio, F. et al. Continuous-wave biexciton lasing at room temperature using solution-processed quantum wells. Nature Nanotech 9, 891–895 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2014.213

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