Efficiency Droop in Zincblende InGaN/GaN Quantum Wells

Daniel Dyer, Stephen Church, Ruben Ahumada Lazo, Menno J. Kappers, Matthew Halsall, Patrick Parkinson, David Wallis, Rachel A. Oliver, David Binks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The decrease in emission efficiency with increasing drive current density, known as ‘droop’, of c-plane wurtzite InGaN/GaN quantum wells presently limits the use of light-emitting diodes based on them for high brightness lighting applications. InGaN/GaN quantum wells grown in the alternative zincblende phase are free of the strong polarisation fields that exacerbate droop and so were investigated by excitation-dependent photoluminescence and photoreflectance studies. Polarisation-resolved measurements revealed that for all excitation densities studied the emission from such samples largely originates from similar microstructures or combinations of microstructures that form within the quantum well layers. Emission efficiency varies significantly with excitation at 10K showing that non-radiative recombination processes are important even at low temperature. The onset of efficiency droop, as determined by photomodulated reflection measurements, occurred at a carrier density of around 1.2×1020 cm−3 - an order of magnitude greater than the value reported for a reference wurtzite quantum well sample using the same method. The high carrier density droop onset combined with the much shorter carrier lifetime within zincblende InGaN/GaN quantum wells indicate they have the potential to effectively delay efficiency droop when used in GaN based light-emitting diodes. However, the material quality of the quantum well layers need to be improved by preventing the formation of microstructures within these layers, and the importance of the role played by non-radiative centres in the QW layer needs to be elucidated, to fully realise the materials potential.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 19 Jun 2024


  • GaN
  • zincblende phase
  • quantum wells
  • efficiency droop
  • photoluminescence
  • photoreflection
  • polarised emission
  • MOCVD growth

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Photon Science Institute


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