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TRUMPF made a breakthrough in short-wave infrared VCSEL

TRUMPF's goal is to manufacture short-wave infrared (SWIR) VCSELs using the most advanced mass production processes to achieve stable and reliable products with excellent performance. This revolutionary short-wave infrared VCSEL technology can help realize new applications such as mobile phone OLED under-screen sensors and automotive LiDAR.

TRUMPF Photonic Components, a division of the TRUMPF Group, is a global leader in VCSEL and photodiode solutions and is mass producing SWIR VCSELs above 1300 nm to support a wide range of consumer applications such as OLED under-display sensing applications in smartphones . TRUMPF has demonstrated excellent results in terms of efficiency for infrared lasers with wavelengths beyond 1300 nm on an industrial-grade manufacturing platform. This brings TRUMPF one step closer to the mass production of indium phosphide (InP) VCSELs in the 1300 nm to 2000 nm range.

Figure 1 TRUMPF advanced VCSEL manufacturing infrastructure

Berthold Schmidt, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of TRUMPF Photonic Components: "At TRUMPF we are working hard to mature and standardize this revolutionary production process, which will further develop this excellent VCSEL technology into a cost-attractive solutions. Our goal is to bring the first SWIR VCSEL products to the high-volume market in 2025."

"By developing a new industrial-grade manufacturing platform, TRUMPF is expanding its current portfolio of gallium arsenide (GaAs)-based VCSELs – with a wavelength range of 760 nm to 1300 nm for near-infrared (NIR) laser applications. With the GaAs platform In contrast, the new InP platform is able to achieve longer wavelength spectra and still provide the same advantages as compact, reliable and economical light sources. Although we have laid a solid foundation for mass production of long wavelength VCSELs, we also know that There is still a long way to go, and major investments in production equipment will have to be made before large-scale mass production,” continues Berthold Schmidt.

VCSELs Conquer New Application Fields

The industrialization of long-wavelength VCSELs can revolutionize a wide range of applications, as short-wavelength infrared VCSELs can be used for sensing applications with higher output power compared to near-infrared VCSELs while maintaining human eye safety. Long wavelength solutions are less susceptible to ambient interfering light such as sunlight in a wider wavelength range. OLED under-display sensing applications are a popular example in the smartphone and consumer electronics device markets. InP-based SWIR VCSELs can be easily integrated under OLED displays without interfering with other functions and with higher eye safety standards. OLED displays are a huge application area for long-wavelength laser sensing solutions.

Berthold Schmidt believes: "In the future, we expect not only in the field of consumer sensing, but also in automotive LiDAR (LiDAR), longer distance data communication, spectroscopy, biomedical, and photonic integrated circuits (PIC) and quantum photonic integration. There are many opportunities in the circuit (QPIC) area. The demand for this has led to a breakthrough in mass production of our SWIR VCSEL technology."

excellent test results

Test results provided by TRUMPF demonstrate the performance of the SWIR VCSEL at ~1390 nm wavelength at operating temperatures up to 140°C, as shown in Figure 3. The technology used to fabricate short-wave infrared VCSELs is scalable for mass production, and the emission wavelength can be tuned between 1300 nm and 2000 nm, enabling a wide range of applications. Recent test results show good reproducibility and excellent temperature performance. Berthold Schmidt said: "I am very proud of our team, because their achievements have enabled TRUMPF to achieve excellent results in short-wave infrared VCSEL performance and stability. We are confident that we can mass-produce high-efficiency, long-wavelength VCSELs as soon as possible to support cost-effective laser sensing solution.”

TRUMPF SWIR VCSEL Optical Power-Current Test

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