It has long been recognized that laser performance is seriously affected when a part of its output, even if only a very small portion, is fed back into the laser cavity. This external optical feedback problem is of particular concern in case of semiconductor diode lasers. One reason is that diode lasers are more susceptible to the external feedback than most other lasers because of the high cavity-mirror transmission, short cavity length, and strong dependence of the active region refractive index on excited carrier density.

© 1984 Optical Society of America

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