Near-field optical beam induced current measurements on heterostructures

M. S. Ünlü*, B. B. Goldberg, W. D. Herzog, D. Sun, E. Towe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


We report near-field optical beam induced current (NOBIC) measurements on semiconductor quantum well (QW) structures. A subwavelength fiber tip is coupled with a tunable laser source and scanned over a sample surface. The induced photocurrent reveals the compositional profile of quantum structures. Semiconductor QW structures were designed and fabricated by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) to study the wavelength dependence and resolution capability of NOBIC. We demonstrated that the resolution of this technique strongly depends on the aperture size. For aperture sizes that allow for coupling of evanescent fields from the tip into the semiconductor as propagating fields, the resolution strongly depends on the excitation wavelength due to the variation of the optical penetration depth. For smaller apertures, the optical field remains evanescent in the semiconductor and resolution is essentially independent of the wavelength.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1862
Number of pages1
JournalApplied Physics Letters
StatePublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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