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Robust Whispering-Gallery-Mode Microbubble Lasers From Colloidal Quantum Dots.

Y. Wang, V. D. Ta, K. S. Leck, B. Tan, Zengcai Wang, T. He, C. Ohl, H. Demir, H. Sun
Published 2017 · Materials Science, Medicine

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Microlasers hold great promise for the development of photonics and optoelectronics. Among the discovered optical gain materials, colloidal quantum dots (CQDs) have been recognized as the most appealing candidate due to the facile emission tunability and solution processability. However, to date, it is still challenging to develop CQD-based microlasers with low cost yet high performance. Moreover, the poor long-term stability of CQDs remains to be the most critical issue, which may block their laser aspirations. Herein, we developed a unique but generic approach to forming a novel type of a whispering-gallery-mode (WGM) microbubble laser from the hybrid CQD/poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) nanocomposites. The formation mechanism of the microbubbles was unraveled by recording the drying process of the nanocomposite droplets. Interestingly, these microbubbles naturally serve as the high-quality WGM laser resonators. By simply changing the CQDs, the lasing emission can be tuned across the whole visible spectral range. Importantly, these microbubble lasers exhibit unprecedented long-term stability (over one year), sufficient for practical applications. As a proof-of-concept, the potential of water vapor sensing was demonstrated. Our results represent a significant advance in microlasers based on the advantageous CQDs and may offer new possibilities for photonics and optoelectronics.
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