Observation of field-induced optical phonon amplification in semiconductor nanostructures

W. Liang, K. T. Tsen, Otto F. Sankey, S. M. Komirenko, K. W. Kim, V. A. Kochelap, Meng Chyi Wu, Chong Long Ho, Wen Jeng Ho, H. Morkoc

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


We have experimentally proven the Cerenkov generation of optical phonons by drifting electrons in a semiconductor. We observe an instability of the polar optical phonons in nanoscale semiconductors that occurs when electrons are accelerated to very high velocities by intense electric fields. The instability is observed when the electron drift velocity is larger than the phase velocity of optical phonons and rather resembles a "sonic-boom" for optical phonons. The effect is demonstrated in p-i-n semiconductor nanostructures by using subpicosecond Raman spectroscopy. We suggest that the observed phenomena will have enormous impact on the carrier dynamics in nanoscale semiconductor devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)174-187
Number of pages14
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - May 30 2003
EventUltrafast Phenomena in Semiconductors VII 2003 - San Jose, United States
Duration: Jan 25 2003Jan 31 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Observation of field-induced optical phonon amplification in semiconductor nanostructures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this