The group III three metal nitrides are attractive candidates for short-wavelength applications in nonlinear optics because of their wide band gaps and their ease of fabrication by vapor deposition techniques. Thin films, which form in the zinc blende/ wurtzite structure, offer the potential for frequency-doubling light from semiconductor lasers as well as the fabrication of high speed electro-optic devices. GaN, with a band gap of ~3.4 eV, has been shown to exhibit second-order electric susceptibilities one order of magnitude higher than those of crystalline quartz.1 In this report the investigation of optical second harmonic generation (SHG) in AIN thin films is presented. AIN films were grown on the (0001) surface of sapphire substrates using the reactive rf magnetron sputtering technique. These films are optically transparent. Samples varying in thickness between 0.15 and 1 μm were fabricated and characterized by SHG studies.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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