Optimization of Current Injection in AlGaInP Core−Shell Nanowire Light-Emitting Diodes

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragLetter

Abstract

Core–shell nanowires offer great potential to enhance the efficiency of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and expand the attainable wavelength range of LEDs over the whole visible spectrum. Additionally, nanowire (NW) LEDs can offer both improved light extraction and emission enhancement if the diameter of the wires is not larger than half the emission wavelength (λ/2). However, AlGaInP nanowire LEDs have so far failed to match the high efficiencies of traditional planar technologies, and the parameters limiting the efficiency remain unidentified. In this work, we show by experimental and theoretical studies that the small nanowire dimensions required for efficient light extraction and emission enhancement facilitate significant loss currents, which result in a low efficiency in radial NW LEDs in particular. To this end, we fabricate AlGaInP core–shell nanowire LEDs where the nanowire diameter is roughly equal to λ/2, and we find that both a large loss current and a large contact resistance are present in the samples. To investigate the significant loss current observed in the experiments in more detail, we carry out device simulations accounting for the full 3D nanowire geometry. According to the simulations, the low efficiency of radial AlGaInP nanowire LEDs can be explained by a substantial hole leakage to the outer barrier layer due to the small layer thicknesses and the close proximity of the shell contact. Using further simulations, we propose modifications to the epitaxial structure to eliminate such leakage currents and to increase the efficiency to near unity without sacrificing the λ/2 upper limit of the nanowire diameter. To gain a better insight of the device physics, we introduce an optical output measurement technique to estimate an ideality factor that is only dependent on the quasi-Fermi level separation in the LED. The results show ideality factors in the range of 1–2 around the maximum LED efficiency even in the presence of a very large voltage loss, indicating that the technique is especially attractive for measuring nanowire LEDs at an early stage of development before electrical contacts have been optimized. The presented results and characterization techniques form a basis of how to simultaneously optimize the electrical and optical efficiency of core–shell nanowire LEDs, paving the way to nanowire light emitters that make true use of larger-than-unity Purcell factors and the consequently enhanced spontaneous emission.

Detaljer

Författare
Enheter & grupper
Externa organisationer
  • Aalto University
  • Halmstad University
Forskningsområden

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Den kondenserade materiens fysik
Originalspråkengelska
Sidor (från-till)3599–3606
TidskriftNano Letters
Volym17
Utgivningsnummer6
StatusPublished - 2017
PublikationskategoriForskning
Peer review utfördJa