Herbert Kroemer



Tailored materials

With heterostructures it is possible to engineer the electrical and optical properties of the material. Through the choice of layer compositions, thicknesses and doping one can optimize the motion of electrons, control the interaction between electrons and photons (light) and build optical waveguides for controlling the propagation of light.




In optoelectronics, electrons and photons interact and exchange energy. This interaction can be improved with heterostructures, which are used in e.g. lasers (laser diodes) and lightemitting diodes. Alferov and Kroemer proposed in 1963, independently of each other, the principle for the heterostructure laser. Alferov and his co-workers produced the first highquality heterostructures which led around 1970 to the demonstration of useful laser diodes. Today, laser diodes produce optical power from a few mW for optical communication up to several W for e.g. laser machining. Laser diodes for fibreoptics can produce several billions of light pulses per second.


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