Abstract

Quantum dot lasers can lase from the ground state only, simultaneously from both the ground and first excited states and from the excited state only. We examine the influence of optical injection at frequencies close to the ground state when the free-running operation of the device is excited state lasing only. We demonstrate the existence of an injection-induced bistability between ground state dominated emission and excited state dominated emission and the consequent hysteresis loop in the lasing output. Experimental and numerical investigations are in excellent agreement. Inhomogeneous broadening is found to be the underlying physical mechanism driving the phenomenon.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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