A Nanowire-Based Plasmonic Quantum Dot Laser

Quantum dots enable strong carrier confinement and exhibit a delta-function like density of states, offering significant improvements to laser performance and high-temperature stability when used as a gain medium. However, quantum dot lasers have been limited to photonic cavities that are diffraction-limited and further miniaturization to meet the demands of nanophotonic-electronic integration applications is challenging based on existing designs. Here we introduce the first quantum dot-based plasmonic laser to reduce the cross-sectional area of nanowire quantum dot lasers below the cutoff limit of photonic modes while maintaining the length in the order of the lasing wavelength. Metal organic chemical vapor deposition grown GaAs–AlGaAs core–shell nanowires containing InGaAs quantum dot stacks are placed directly on a silver film, and lasing was observed from single nanowires originating from the InGaAs quantum dot emission into the low-loss higher order plasmonic mode. Lasing threshold pump fluences as low as ∼120 μJ/cm2 was observed at 7 K, and lasing was observed up to 125 K. Temperature stability from the quantum dot gain, leading to a high characteristic temperature was demonstrated. These results indicate that high-performance, miniaturized quantum dot lasers can be realized with plasmonics.