JP4179280B2 - Manufacturing method of semiconductor light emitting device - Google Patents

Manufacturing method of semiconductor light emitting device Download PDF

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JP4179280B2
JP4179280B2 JP2004380818A JP2004380818A JP4179280B2 JP 4179280 B2 JP4179280 B2 JP 4179280B2 JP 2004380818 A JP2004380818 A JP 2004380818A JP 2004380818 A JP2004380818 A JP 2004380818A JP 4179280 B2 JP4179280 B2 JP 4179280B2
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元伸 竹谷
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ソニー株式会社
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  The present invention relates to a method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device, and is particularly suitable for application to a semiconductor laser or a light emitting diode using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor.

In recent years, research and development of semiconductor lasers using nitride-based III-V compound semiconductors such as AlGaInN as active semiconductor lasers capable of emitting light from the blue region to the ultraviolet region, which are necessary for increasing the density of optical disks, have been actively conducted. Has already been put to practical use.
As a semiconductor laser using this nitride III-V compound semiconductor, a semiconductor laser having a ridge structure formed by selective growth has been proposed (Non-patent Document 1 and Patent Document 1). The main part of this semiconductor laser is shown in FIG. As shown in FIG. 9, in order to manufacture this semiconductor laser, a p-type GaN contact layer (neither shown) and an n-type AlGaN cladding layer 101 are formed on a c-plane sapphire substrate via a GaN buffer layer grown at a low temperature. , n-type GaN optical guide layer 102 are sequentially grown an active layer 103, p-type GaN optical guide layer 104 and the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 105, to form an SiO 2 film 106 thereon, predetermined the SiO 2 film 106 After forming the stripe-shaped opening 106a in the portion, the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 107 and the p-type GaN contact layer 108 are sequentially formed on the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 105 in the portion of the opening 106a using the SiO 2 film 106 as a growth mask. A ridge is formed by selective growth.

J. Crystal Growth 144 (1994) 133 JP 2000-58461 A

However, according to the study of the present inventor, in the above-described conventional semiconductor laser, when the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 107 is selectively grown on the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 105 in the opening 106a portion of the SiO 2 film 106, An n-type impurity (mainly Si) used for doping during the growth of the lower n-type layer remains in the growth chamber of the growth apparatus, and the growth interface is contaminated by this n-type impurity, or a defect that acts as a donor on the growth interface. Or the like, the vicinity of the growth interface becomes n-type. Therefore, actually, as shown in FIG. 10, an n-type AlGaN layer 109 is formed at the interface between the p-type AlGaN cladding layer 105 and the selectively grown p-type AlGaN cladding layer 107, and these layers form a pnp structure. Will be formed. As a result, there is a problem that the series resistance of the p-type clad layer composed of the p-type AlGaN clad layer 105 and the p-type AlGaN clad layer 107 as a whole increases, and the operating voltage of the semiconductor laser increases.

Therefore, the problem to be solved by the present invention is to provide a semiconductor light emitting device capable of reducing the operating voltage while maintaining the thickness of the p-side cladding layer at a value necessary and sufficient for obtaining good optical characteristics. It is an object of the present invention to provide a method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device that can be manufactured easily.
The above and other problems of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of the present specification with reference to the accompanying drawings.

In order to solve the above problems, the first invention of the present invention is:
In a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor having a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth,
The p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side, and the second layer is the second layer. Having a third layer with a larger band gap;
When the growth interface between the ridge and the underlying layer is provided with an undoped or other n-type layer in contact with the first layer between the first layer or the first layer and the second layer It is included in this layer or other layers.
Here, when the growth interface between the ridge and the underlying layer is provided with an undoped or other n-type layer in contact with the first layer or between the first layer and the second layer. Is included in the first layer or the other layer when the growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer is completely included in the first layer or the first layer or the other layer, It also means that the growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer coincides with the surface of the first layer on the second layer side or the surface of the other layer on the second layer side. This is because the distance between the bottom surface (the surface of the underlayer) on both sides of the ridge and the active layer is d, and the distance between the p-type layer included in the ridge and the active layer closest to the active layer is L. In other words, it can be paraphrased that L p ≧ d.

  This semiconductor light emitting device typically has an SCH (Separate Confinement Heterostructure) structure. That is, an n-side optical waveguide layer is provided between the n-side cladding layer and the active layer, and a p-side optical waveguide layer is provided between the p-side cladding layer and the active layer.

Generally, it is sufficient that the total thickness of the p-side cladding layer is 500 to 600 nm. The thickness of the p-type second layer of the p-side cladding layer is generally greater than 0 nm and less than or equal to 550 nm or less than or equal to 450 nm, but typically greater than or equal to 390 nm and less than or equal to 550 nm, more typically greater than or equal to 400 nm and less than 530 nm. It is as follows. On the other hand, the thickness of the undoped first layer of the p-side cladding layer (in this case, which exhibits an n type and the specific resistance is generally about a few to one digit lower than that of the p-type layer) Although it is larger than 0 nm and 500 nm or less, from the viewpoint of sufficiently reducing the resistance of the p-side cladding layer, it is preferably selected to be 50 nm or more, more preferably 70 nm or more, and even more preferably 90 nm or more, Typically, it is selected to be 400 nm or less, 300 nm or less, or 200 nm or less, and may be a range in which these upper and lower limits are arbitrarily combined. The thickness of the first layer is selected from 70 nm to 130 nm in one typical example, and from 90 nm to 110 nm in a more typical example. These undoped or n-type first layer and p-type second layer provide the necessary optical properties, for example, a sufficiently high optical confinement factor Γ and a good far field pattern (FFP). As long as the above can be obtained, they may be made of the same material or different materials. As an example of the former, the case where AlGaN is used as the material of the first layer and the second layer is mentioned. As an example of the latter, AlGaN is used as the material of the second layer, and the material of the first layer is used. Examples include using AlGaInN, GaN, InGaN, and the like. The first layer and the second layer may be in direct contact with each other or indirectly through another layer having some function. In particular, when an undoped or other n-type layer is provided between the first layer and the second layer in contact with the first layer, the growth of the ridge and the underlayer is performed as described above. The interface is included in the first layer or other layers.

  Further, when the n-side optical waveguide layer and the p-side optical waveguide layer are provided, their thickness is generally larger than 0 nm and 50 nm or less.

  The undoped or n-type first layer of the p-side cladding layer makes it easier for holes injected from the p-side electrode side to reach the active layer by the tunnel effect during the operation of the semiconductor light emitting device, thereby increasing the injection efficiency. From the viewpoint of preventing the deterioration of the active layer by suppressing the diffusion of Mg normally used as the p-type impurity of the second layer to the active layer side by introducing the hetero interface, a superlattice structure is preferable. . In one typical example, the entire p-side cladding layer has a superlattice structure.

The third layer present in the p-type second layer is generally composed of a p-type nitride-based III-V group compound semiconductor containing Al and Ga. More specifically, for example, p-type Al x Ga 1-x N (where 0 <x <1), and from the viewpoint of effectively suppressing overflow of electrons injected into the active layer, p-type Al x Ga 1-x N ( However, it consists of 0.15 ≦ x <1).

  From the viewpoint of preventing deterioration of the active layer due to diffusion of Mg, which is normally used as a p-type impurity in the p-type second layer, into the active layer, the p-type second layer of the active layer and the p-side cladding layer is used. The distance between these layers is preferably 20 nm or more, more preferably 50 nm or more, and even more preferably 100 nm or more. Further, according to a recent report, the diffusion distance of holes in GaN is about 0.28 μm (280 nm), and considering this, the probability of recombination with electrons is lowered, and the hole diffusion into the active layer is reduced. In order to increase the injection efficiency, it is desirable that the distance between the active layer and the p-type second layer of the p-side cladding layer be less than this diffusion distance.

  On the other hand, from the viewpoint of preventing the active layer from deteriorating by suppressing the diffusion of p-type impurities such as Mg from the p-type second layer of the p-side cladding layer to the active layer, the active layer and the p-type layer are preferably used. At least one combination of layers having different band gaps or different lattice constants exists between the second layer of the side cladding layer, or at least a superlattice structure composed of layers having different atomic composition ratios. One or more layers are present, and this is used as a lattice strain layer to prevent Mg diffusion.

Typically, the nitride-based III-V compound semiconductor constituting the barrier layer of the active layer is In x Ga 1-x N (where 0 <x <1), and constitutes the well layer of the active layer. The nitride-based III-V compound semiconductor is In y Ga 1-y N (where 0 <y <1 and y> x).

  A nitride-based III-V compound semiconductor generally contains at least one group III element selected from the group consisting of Ga, Al, In and B, and at least N, and optionally further contains As or P. It is composed of a group V element, and specific examples include GaN, InN, AlN, AlGaN, InGaN, AlGaInN, and the like.

Typically, a growth mask is formed on the underlayer, and a ridge is selectively grown on the underlayer in the opening of the growth mask. The growth mask is generally formed of an insulating film. Specific examples of the insulating film include a silicon dioxide (SiO 2 ) film, a silicon nitride (Si 3 N 4 ) film, and a silicon oxynitride (SiON) film. . The underlayer for selective growth may be the first layer, may be an undoped or n-type layer obtained by growing the first layer to an intermediate thickness, and When an undoped or other n-type layer is provided in contact with the first layer between the second layer and the second layer, this may be another layer. The ridge includes, for example, an upper layer portion of the first layer, a second layer, and a third layer. Specifically, for example, the upper layer portion of the first layer, the second layer, the third layer, and the third layer It consists of a p-type contact layer. Alternatively, the ridge includes a second layer, a third layer, and a p-type contact layer.

The second invention of this invention is:
In a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor having a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth,
The p-side cladding layer comprises an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side,
When the growth interface between the ridge and the underlying layer is provided with an undoped or other n-type layer in contact with the first layer between the first layer or the first layer and the second layer It is included in this layer or other layers.
In the second invention of the present invention, what has been described in relation to the first invention is valid as long as it is not contrary to the nature thereof.

The third invention of the present invention is:
In a semiconductor light emitting device having a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth,
The p-side cladding layer comprises an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side,
When the growth interface between the ridge and the underlying layer is provided with an undoped or other n-type layer in contact with the first layer between the first layer or the first layer and the second layer It is included in this layer or other layers.

Here, this semiconductor light emitting device may basically be any semiconductor, and other than those using nitride III-V compound semiconductors, AlGaAs semiconductors, AlGaInP semiconductors, Various III-V compound semiconductors such as InGaAsP-based semiconductors and GaInNAs-based semiconductors, II-VI group compound semiconductors such as ZnSe-based semiconductors, and those using diamond may also be used.
In the third invention of the present invention, what has been described in relation to the first invention is valid as long as it is not contrary to the nature of the invention.

The fourth invention of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A nitride system III comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity, wherein the second layer has a third layer having a larger band gap than the second layer. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a -V group compound semiconductor,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And growing an undoped or n-type layer, a second layer, and a third layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

The fifth invention of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A nitride system III comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity, wherein the second layer has a third layer having a larger band gap than the second layer. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a -V group compound semiconductor,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And growing a second layer and a third layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

The sixth invention of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And growing an undoped or n-type layer and a second layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

The seventh invention of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And a step of growing a second layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

The eighth invention of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And a step of growing an undoped or n-type layer and a second layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

The ninth aspect of the present invention is:
It has a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth, and the p-side cladding layer is undoped or n-type in order from the active layer side. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device comprising a first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity,
Forming a growth mask having a predetermined opening on the first layer after growing the first layer;
And a step of growing a second layer on the first layer in the opening of the growth mask.

In the fourth to ninth aspects of the invention, typically, a p-type contact layer is further grown on the second layer of the p-side cladding layer.
In the fourth to ninth inventions of the present invention, what has been described in relation to the first to third inventions is valid as long as it is not contrary to the nature thereof.

The tenth aspect of the present invention is:
an n-side cladding layer;
an active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
a ridge formed by selective growth on the p-side cladding layer;
The p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side, and the second layer is the second layer. Having a third layer with a larger band gap;
A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, wherein a ridge growth interface is included in a first layer ,
The growth from the active layer to the third layer is characterized in that it is carried out in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component.

The eleventh aspect of the present invention is:
an n-side cladding layer;
an active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
a ridge formed by selective growth on the p-side cladding layer;
The p-side cladding layer comprises an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side,
A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, wherein a ridge growth interface is included in a first layer ,
The growth from the active layer to the first layer is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component.

The twelfth aspect of the present invention is
In a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor having a structure in which an active layer is sandwiched between an n-side cladding layer and a p-side cladding layer and a ridge structure formed by selective growth,
The distance between the active layer and the p-type layer doped with the p-type impurity closest to the active layer is 50 nm or more.

  In the twelfth aspect of the present invention, the distance between the active layer and the p-type layer closest to the active layer is greater than the deterioration of the active layer due to the diffusion of p-type impurities doped in the p-type layer. From the viewpoint of preventing effectively, it is preferably 60 nm or more, and more preferably 100 nm or more. The distance between the active layer and the p-type layer is preferably as large as possible in order to prevent deterioration of the active layer due to diffusion of p-type impurities, but generally 500 nm. It is as follows. The distance between the active layer and the p-type layer is typically 50 nm to 500 nm, more typically 100 nm to 200 nm. The p-type layer closest to the active layer is, for example, a p-type layer having a band gap larger than that of the p-side cladding layer, and is the same as the third layer in the first invention of the present invention.

The thirteenth invention of the present invention is
an n-side cladding layer;
an active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
a ridge formed by selective growth on the p-side cladding layer;
The distance between the active layer and the p-type layer doped with the p-type impurity closest to the active layer and having a band gap larger than that of the p-side cladding layer is 50 nm or more, and p The p-type layer having a larger band gap than the side cladding layer is between the active layer and the p-side cladding layer when the entire p-side cladding layer is a p-type layer, and the p-side cladding layer is the active layer. A nitride which is between the first layer and the second layer in the case of comprising an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the side A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a III-V compound semiconductor,
The growth from the active layer to the p-type layer having a larger band gap than the p-side cladding layer is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component. It is.

  In the tenth to thirteenth inventions of the present invention, what has been described in relation to the first invention is valid as long as it is not contrary to the nature thereof.

  In the twelfth and thirteenth aspects of the present invention, even if the entire p-side cladding layer is a p-type layer, the undoped or n-type first layer and p It may consist of a second layer of the mold. In the latter case, what has been described in relation to the first to eleventh inventions of the present invention is valid as long as it is not contrary to the nature thereof.

In the tenth, eleventh and thirteenth inventions of the present invention, from the viewpoint of more effectively preventing the detachment of In from the In-containing layer, for example, the active layer, it is most preferable that hydrogen is substantially removed. An N 2 gas atmosphere is used as a carrier gas atmosphere containing nitrogen as a main component. On the other hand, with respect to the growth of the p-type layer performed after the growth using the carrier gas atmosphere containing nitrogen as a main component and containing substantially no hydrogen, the viewpoint of reducing the resistance of the p-type layer More preferably, a carrier gas atmosphere mainly containing nitrogen and hydrogen is used, and most preferably, a mixed gas atmosphere of N 2 and H 2 is used.

  Various substrates can be used as the substrate on which the nitride III-V compound semiconductor layer is grown. Specifically, the sapphire substrate, SiC substrate, Si substrate, GaAs substrate, GaP substrate, InP substrate, spinel. In addition to a substrate, a silicon oxide substrate, or the like, a substrate made of a nitride III-V compound semiconductor layer such as a thick GaN layer may be used.

  As a growth method or selective growth method of a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, for example, metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD), hydride vapor phase epitaxial growth, or halide vapor phase epitaxial growth (HVPE) can be used. In addition to these methods, for example, molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) can be used as a growth method for all compound semiconductors including nitride III-V compound semiconductors.

  According to the first to ninth aspects of the present invention configured as described above, the p-side cladding layer is p-type doped with an n-type first layer and a p-type impurity sequentially from the active layer side. The growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer is in contact with the first layer or between the first layer and the second layer, and is undoped or other n-type. When a layer is provided, the growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer is included by being included in the first layer or other layers, that is, the growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer is included in the n-type layer. When the ridge is formed by selective growth as in the prior art, which is the surface of the p-type layer, the growth interface is contaminated by n-type impurities, or a defect acting as a donor is generated at the growth interface. The problem of forming a pnp structure by n-type formation is essential Not present in, thus achieving a reduction in the series resistance of the entire p-side cladding layer, it is possible to reduce the operating voltage. Further, since the p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side, optical characteristics such as an optical confinement coefficient Γ. Since the thickness of the p-side cladding layer that determines the quality of the p-type and the thickness of the p-type second layer that determines the size of the operating voltage can be controlled independently, the operating characteristics are low and the optical characteristics are good ( For example, a semiconductor light-emitting element can be easily realized (for example, θ F of FFP is small). In other words, while ensuring the thickness of the p-side cladding layer necessary for obtaining a good optical field and obtaining good optical characteristics for the semiconductor light emitting device, a high resistivity p that causes an increase in operating voltage. The operating voltage can be reduced by making the mold layer as thin as possible. In addition, since the distance between the active layer and the second layer can be made sufficiently large, the p-type impurities in the second layer can be prevented from diffusing into the active layer, and the active layer can be deteriorated. Can be prevented. Furthermore, particularly when the second layer has a p-type third layer having a band gap larger than that of the second layer, electrons injected into the active layer overflow due to the third layer. While it is possible to freely design the distance between the third layer and the active layer, the composition of which is generally different from that of the active layer, it is possible to alleviate the strain generated in the active layer. Therefore, deterioration of the active layer can be prevented.

In addition, since all of the p-type layer such as the p-type second layer is contained in the ridge, the operating temperature of the semiconductor light emitting device rises and the p-type layer such as the p-type second layer has a higher operating temperature. Even if the activation rate of p-type impurities such as Mg is increased and the resistance of the p-type layer is lowered, the current leaking to the outside of the ridge can be greatly reduced. This particularly contributes to an improvement in the characteristic temperature T 0 of the semiconductor laser.

  According to the tenth and eleventh inventions of the present invention, the growth from the active layer to the third layer is performed in the tenth invention, and the first of the p-side cladding layer from the active layer in the eleventh invention. Is grown in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component. Therefore, it is effective that In is desorbed from a layer containing In, for example, an active layer. Therefore, the active layer can be prevented from deteriorating. On the other hand, the subsequent p-type layer can be grown with good crystallinity by being grown in a carrier gas atmosphere mainly composed of nitrogen and hydrogen.

According to the twelfth aspect of the present invention, since the distance between the active layer and the p-type layer doped with the p-type impurity closest to the active layer is 50 nm or more, the p-type Diffusion of p-type impurities doped in the layer into the active layer can be greatly reduced, and deterioration of the active layer can be prevented.
According to the thirteenth aspect of the present invention, the growth from the active layer to the p-type layer having a band gap larger than that of the p-side cladding layer is substantially free of hydrogen and contains a carrier gas mainly containing nitrogen. Since it is performed in an atmosphere, it is possible to suppress the separation of In from a layer containing In, for example, an active layer, and to prevent the active layer from deteriorating. The subsequent p-type layer can be grown with good crystallinity by growing in a carrier gas atmosphere containing nitrogen and hydrogen as main components.

According to the present invention, the p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side, and If the growth interface is provided with an undoped or other n-type layer in contact with the first layer or between the first layer and the second layer, the first layer or other By being included in the layer, there is essentially no problem that the vicinity of the growth interface becomes n-type and a pnp structure is formed. Therefore, the series resistance of the entire p-side cladding layer is reduced, and the operating voltage is reduced. be able to. Further, the p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in this order from the active layer side. The thickness of the p-type layer having a high specific resistance that causes an increase in the operating voltage can be achieved while ensuring the thickness of the p-side cladding layer necessary for obtaining a good optical field and obtaining good optical characteristics. The operating voltage of the semiconductor light emitting element can be reduced by making it as thin as possible. In addition, since the distance between the active layer and the second layer can be made sufficiently large, the p-type impurities in the second layer can be prevented from diffusing into the active layer, thereby preventing the active layer from deteriorating. . Furthermore, particularly when the second layer has a p-type third layer having a band gap larger than that of the second layer, electrons injected into the active layer overflow due to the third layer. Can be suppressed.
Further, since the p-type layer in the ridge portion is entirely contained within the ridge, it is possible to effectively suppress the leakage of the current injected during the operation of the semiconductor light emitting device to the outside of the ridge. It is possible to obtain a remarkably high characteristic temperature as compared with the conventional case and to obtain extremely good temperature characteristics.
In addition, since the growth of a specific layer including a layer containing In is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere substantially containing no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component, the layer containing In, for example, an active layer Indium can be effectively prevented from desorbing from the active layer, deterioration of the active layer can be prevented, and the reliability and life of the semiconductor light emitting device can be improved.
Moreover, since the distance between the active layer and the p-type layer doped with the p-type impurity closest to the active layer is 50 nm or more, the p-type impurity active layer doped in the p-type layer Diffusion to the substrate can be significantly reduced, deterioration of the active layer can be prevented, and the reliability and life of the semiconductor light emitting device can be improved.

Hereinafter, embodiments of the present invention will be described with reference to the drawings. In all the drawings of the embodiments, the same or corresponding parts are denoted by the same reference numerals.
FIG. 1 shows a GaN semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment of the present invention. This GaN-based semiconductor laser has a ridge structure and an SCH structure formed by selective growth. FIG. 2 is an enlarged view of the vicinity of the ridge portion of the GaN-based semiconductor laser. FIG. 3 shows the energy band of this GaN-based semiconductor laser, particularly its conduction band.

As shown in FIG. 1, in the GaN semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, a lateral crystal growth technique (for example, Applied Physics Letters) is formed on one main surface of a c-plane sapphire substrate 1.
vol.75 (1999) pp.196-198) GaN-based semiconductor layers are stacked. Specifically, on one main surface of the c-plane sapphire substrate 1, a stripe composed of an undoped GaN buffer layer 2 and an undoped GaN layer 3 formed thereon is formed and extends in the <1-100> direction. The n-type GaN contact layer 4 is grown as a continuous layer using the striped undoped GaN layer 3 as a seed crystal. Here, the surface layer portion of the c-plane sapphire substrate 1 on both sides of the stripe is also removed, and in this portion, the n-type GaN contact layer 4 has a structure floating from the c-plane sapphire substrate 1. An n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5 and an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 as an n-side optical waveguide layer, for example, undoped In x Ga 1 -x N / In y Ga 1 -y, are formed on the n-type GaN contact layer 4. An active layer 7 having an N multiple quantum well structure, an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 as a p-side optical waveguide layer, and an undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 as a p-side cladding layer are sequentially stacked. The undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6, the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, and the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 are all n type. In these layers, dislocations 10 propagated from the seed crystal for lateral crystal growth to the upper layer and an association portion 11 for lateral growth from the adjacent seed crystals are formed.

The layers from the upper layer portion of the n-type GaN contact layer 4 to the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 have a mesa shape with a predetermined width as a whole. On the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 in the mesa portion, an insulating film 12 such as a SiO 2 film is provided as a growth mask. For example, a stripe-shaped opening 13 extending in the <1-100> direction is formed in a predetermined portion of the insulating film 12. At the opening 13, a thin undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, an undoped InGaN layer 14, a p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, and a p-type AlGaN / GaN as a p-side cladding layer on the underlying undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9. A superlattice cladding layer 16 and a p-type GaN contact layer 17 are sequentially stacked by selective growth to form, for example, a ridge 18 extending in the <1-100> direction. The width of the ridge 18, in other words, the width of the opening 13 of the insulating film 12 is, for example, 1.6 μm. The ridge 18, that is, the laser stripe portion, is located above the low defect region between the dislocation 10 propagated from the seed crystal of the lateral crystal growth to the upper layer and the meeting portion 11 of the lateral growth from the adjacent seed crystal. is doing. The undoped InGaN layer 14 is n type. The reason why the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is used as the p-side cladding layer is to facilitate the passage of holes by the tunnel effect.

Here, the undoped GaN buffer layer 2 has a thickness of, for example, 30 nm. The undoped GaN layer 3 has a thickness of 2 μm, for example. The n-type GaN contact layer 4 has a thickness of, for example, 4 μm, and is doped with, for example, silicon (Si) as an n-type impurity. The n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5 has a thickness of, for example, 1.2 μm, is doped with, for example, Si as an n-type impurity, and has an Al composition ratio of, for example, 0.065. The undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 has a thickness of, for example, 30 nm and an In composition ratio of, for example, 0.02. The active layer 7 of the undoped In x Ga 1 -x N / In y Ga 1 -y N multiple quantum well structure includes an In x Ga 1 -x N layer as a barrier layer and an In y Ga 1- as a well layer. those in which the y N layer are alternately laminated, for example, in x Ga 1-x N layer x = 0.02 thick at 7nm of as a barrier layer, as a well layer in y Ga 1-y N The layer thickness is 3.5 nm, y = 0.08, and the number of wells is 3.

  The undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 has a thickness of, for example, 30 nm and an In composition ratio of, for example, 0.02. The undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 has a thickness of, for example, 100 nm and an Al composition ratio of, for example, 0.025. The undoped InGaN layer 14 has a thickness of, for example, 5 nm and an In composition ratio of, for example, 0.02. The p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 has a thickness of 10 nm, for example, and an Al composition ratio of 0.18, for example. The p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 has, for example, an undoped AlGaN layer with a thickness of 2.5 nm as a barrier layer, and a GaN layer doped with Mg with a thickness of 2.5 nm, for example, as a well layer. It has an alternately stacked structure, the average Al composition ratio is, for example, 0.06, and the overall thickness is, for example, 400 nm. The p-type GaN contact layer 17 has a thickness of 100 nm, for example, and is doped with, for example, Mg as a p-type impurity.

A p-side electrode 19 is provided extending on the insulating film 12 so as to cover the p-type GaN contact layer 17. The p-side electrode 19 has a structure in which a Pd film, a Pt film, and an Au film are sequentially laminated. The thicknesses of the Pd film, the Pt film, and the Au film are, for example, 10 nm, 100 nm, and 300 nm, respectively. Further, an insulating film 20 such as a SiO 2 film having a thickness of 200 nm is provided so as to cover the entire mesa portion. This insulating film 20 is for electrical insulation and surface protection. An opening 21 is provided in the insulating film 20 above the ridge 18, and the p-side electrode 19 is exposed in the opening 21. On the other hand, an opening 22 is provided in a predetermined portion of the insulating film 20 adjacent to the mesa portion, and the n-side electrode 23 is in contact with the n-type GaN contact layer 4 through the opening 22. The n-side electrode 23 has a structure in which a Ti film, a Pt film, and an Au film are sequentially stacked. The thicknesses of the Ti film, the Pt film, and the Au film are, for example, 10 nm, 50 nm, and 100 nm, respectively.

Next, a method of manufacturing the GaN semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment will be described.
First, an undoped GaN buffer layer 2 is grown on a c-plane sapphire substrate 1 whose surface is previously cleaned by thermal cleaning or the like at a temperature of, for example, about 500 ° C. by a metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) method. For example, the undoped GaN layer 3 is grown at a growth temperature of 1000 ° C. by the method.

Next, an SiO 2 film (not shown) having a thickness of 100 nm, for example, is formed on the entire surface of the undoped GaN layer 3 by, for example, CVD, vacuum deposition, sputtering, or the like, and then predetermined on the SiO 2 film by lithography. A resist pattern (not shown) having a shape is formed, and using this resist pattern as a mask, for example, wet etching using a hydrofluoric acid-based etching solution or etching gas containing fluorine such as CF 4 or CHF 3 is used. The SiO 2 film is etched and patterned by the RIE method. Next, etching is performed until the surface layer portion of the c-plane sapphire substrate 1 is removed by, for example, the RIE method using the SiO 2 film having the predetermined shape as a mask. As this RIE etching gas, for example, a chlorine-based gas is used. By this etching, a stripe-shaped undoped GaN layer 3 serving as a seed crystal is formed. The extending direction of the stripe-shaped undoped GaN layer 3 is the <1-100> direction.

Next, after removing the SiO 2 film used as an etching mask by etching, the n-type GaN contact layer 4 is grown by the above-described lateral crystal growth technique using the stripe-shaped undoped GaN layer 3 as a seed crystal. The growth temperature at this time is set to 1070 ° C., for example.

Subsequently, an n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5, an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6, an undoped Ga 1-x In x N / Ga 1-y In y N multiple quantum well are formed on the n-type GaN contact layer 4 by MOCVD. An active layer 7, an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, and an undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 having a structure are sequentially grown.

Next, an insulating film 12 such as a SiO 2 film having a thickness of 0.1 μm, for example, is formed on the entire surface of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 by, for example, CVD, vacuum deposition, sputtering, or the like. A resist pattern (not shown) having a predetermined shape corresponding to the shape of the mesa portion is formed on the substrate by lithography, and using this resist pattern as a mask, for example, wet etching using a hydrofluoric acid-based etching solution, or CF 4 or CHF The insulating film 12 is etched by the RIE method using an etching gas containing fluorine such as 3 to form the opening 13. Next, using the insulating film 12 having the opening 13 as a growth mask, the thin undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the undoped InGaN layer 14, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, and the p-type AlGaN as a p-side cladding layer, for example, by MOCVD. The / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 and the p-type GaN contact layer 17 are selectively grown sequentially. Here, the selective growth of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is stopped when it is laterally grown on the insulating film 12 and the cross-sectional shape becomes a trapezoid.

  The growth temperature of these GaN-based semiconductor layers is, for example, 900 to 1000 ° C. for the n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5, undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6, active layer 7, undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, undoped The InGaN layer 14 and the p-type AlGaN electron block layer 15 are 780 ° C., and the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 and the p-type GaN contact layer 17 are 900 to 1000 ° C.

The growth raw materials of these GaN-based semiconductor layers are, for example, trimethylgallium ((CH 3 ) 3 Ga, TMG) as a Ga raw material, trimethylaluminum ((CH 3 ) 3 Al, TMA) as an Al raw material, In As a raw material, trimethylindium ((CH 3 ) 3 In, TMI) is used, and as a raw material of N, NH 3 is used. As for the dopant, for example, silane (SiH 4 ) is used as the n-type dopant, and bis = methylcyclopentadienyl magnesium ((CH 3 C 5 H 4 ) 2 Mg) or bis = cyclopentadienyl is used as the p-type dopant. Magnesium ((C 5 H 5 ) 2 Mg) is used.

As the carrier gas atmosphere during the growth of these GaN-based semiconductor layers, the n-type GaN contact layer 4 and the n-type AlGaN clad layer 5 are mixed gas of N 2 and H 2, and the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 to p A N 2 gas atmosphere is used up to the type AlGaN electron block layer 15, and a mixed gas of N 2 and H 2 is used for the p type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 and the p type GaN contact layer 17. In this case, in the growth from the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 to the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, the carrier gas atmosphere is an N 2 atmosphere, and the carrier gas atmosphere does not contain H 2 . Desorption of In from the active layer 7, the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, and the undoped InGaN layer 14 can be suppressed, and deterioration of these layers can be prevented. Further, since the carrier gas atmosphere is a mixed gas atmosphere of N 2 and H 2 during the growth of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice clad layer 16 and the p-type GaN contact layer 17, these p-type layers have good crystallinity. Can be grown in.

  Next, the c-plane sapphire substrate 1 on which the GaN-based semiconductor layer is grown as described above is taken out from the MOCVD apparatus. Then, a p-side electrode 19 is formed by sequentially forming a Pd film, a Pt film, and an Au film on the entire surface of the ridge 18 and the insulating film 12 by, for example, vacuum deposition.

Next, an SiO 2 film (not shown) having a thickness of, for example, 0.1 μm is formed on the entire surface of the p-side electrode 19 by, for example, CVD, vacuum deposition, sputtering, or the like, and lithography is performed on the SiO 2 film. To form a resist pattern (not shown) having a predetermined shape corresponding to the shape of the mesa portion, and using this resist pattern as a mask, for example, wet etching using a hydrofluoric acid-based etching solution, or CF 4 or CHF 3 The SiO 2 film is etched and patterned by the RIE method using an etching gas containing fluorine. Next, etching is performed until the n-type GaN contact layer 4 is reached by, for example, the RIE method using the SiO 2 film having the predetermined shape as a mask. As this RIE etching gas, for example, a chlorine-based gas is used. By this etching, the upper layer portion of the n-type GaN contact layer 4, the n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5, the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6, the active layer 7, the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the insulating film 12 and the p The side electrode 19 is patterned into a mesa shape.

Next, after the SiO 2 film used as an etching mask is removed by etching, an insulating film 20 such as a SiO 2 film is formed on the entire surface of the substrate by, for example, a CVD method, a vacuum evaporation method, a sputtering method, or the like.

Next, a resist pattern (not shown) that covers the surface of the insulating film 20 in a region excluding the n-side electrode formation region is formed by lithography.
Next, the opening 22 is formed by etching the insulating film 20 using the resist pattern as a mask.

  Next, a Ti film, a Pt film, and an Au film are sequentially formed on the entire surface of the substrate with the resist pattern remaining, for example, by vacuum deposition, and then the resist pattern is formed on the Ti film, the Pt film, and the Au formed thereon. Remove with film (lift-off). As a result, an n-side electrode 23 in contact with the n-type GaN contact layer 4 through the opening 22 of the insulating film 20 is formed. Next, the alloy process for making the n side electrode 23 ohmic-contact is performed.

Next, a resist pattern (not shown) having an opening exposing the p-side electrode 19 near the upper portion of the ridge 18 is formed by lithography.
Next, the opening 21 is formed by etching the insulating film 20 using this resist pattern as a mask, and the p-side electrode 19 is exposed in the opening 21.

After that, the substrate on which the laser structure is formed as described above is processed into a bar shape by cleaving or the like to form both resonator end faces, and after applying end face coating to these resonator end faces, A chip is formed by cleavage.
As described above, the GaN-based semiconductor laser having the target ridge structure and SCH structure is manufactured.

In this GaN-based semiconductor laser, the thickness t of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 in the p-side cladding layer composed of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is changed, and the operating voltage at that time Table 1 shows the results of obtaining the aging deterioration rate. Further, a graph of Table 1 is shown in FIGS. Here, the operating voltage is at 25 ° C. and the light output is 30 mW. The aging deterioration rate is the one when the optical output is 30 mW at 60 ° C., but since the increase rate of the operating current I OP is high immediately after the start of aging, the I OP increase rate in 10 to 100 hours was used. The initial operating current I OP was 55 mA. The specific resistance of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 is about a few Ωcm, and the specific resistance of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is about 2 Ωcm. The resonator length was 600 μm (0.06 cm), the width of the ridge 18 was 1.6 μm, and the total thickness of the p-side cladding layer was 500 nm.

Table 1
-----------------------------
t (nm) Operating voltage (V) Aging degradation rate
(%)
-----------------------------
0 5.13 5.30
20 5.08 3.40
50 4.99 2.00
100 4.85 1.50
150 4.70 1.40
200 4.56 1.00
250 4.42 0.80
300 4.27 0.90
350 4.13 0.80
400 3.99 0.70
-----------------------------

  At present, the operating voltage at 30 mW (25 ° C.) is preferably 5 V or less, and the aging deterioration rate is considered to be a practical level with an operating current increase rate of 20% or less after 5000 hours of operation, from Table 1, FIG. 4 and FIG. It can be seen that, in order to satisfy these conditions, the thickness of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 needs to be 50 nm or more. It can also be seen that the operating voltage and the aging deterioration rate are both reduced by increasing the thickness of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9.

According to the first embodiment, the following various advantages can be obtained. That is, the p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 having a thickness of 105 nm, for example, and a p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 12 having a thickness of 400 nm, for example, in order from the active layer 7 side. The growth interface between the ridge 18 and the underlayer formed by selective growth in the portion 13 is included in the n -type undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, so that the growth interface between the ridge and the underlayer is on the surface of the p-type layer. When a ridge is formed by selective growth as in a certain prior art, the growth interface is contaminated by an n-type impurity, or a defect acting as a donor is generated at the growth interface, so that the vicinity of the growth interface becomes n-type and a pnp structure There is essentially no problem of forming. For this reason, the series resistance of the entire p-side cladding layer can be reduced, and the operating voltage can be reduced. In addition, since the p-side cladding layer is composed of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 as described above, the thickness of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 having a higher specific resistance. As a result, the operating voltage of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be reduced, for example, compared to the case where the entire p-side cladding layer is composed of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 having the total thickness. About 0.16V can be reduced. Further, since the total thickness of the p-side cladding layer is about 500 nm and is sufficiently large, the p-side light can be sufficiently confined, and a good FFP can be obtained. That is, the thickness of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 having a high specific resistance that causes an increase in operating voltage while ensuring the thickness of the p-side cladding layer necessary for obtaining good optical characteristics. The operating voltage can be reduced by reducing the thickness by about 100 nm.

  The distances between the active layer 7 and the p-type layer doped with Mg, that is, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16, and the p-type GaN contact layer 17, are undoped InGaN. Since the total thickness of the optical waveguide layer 8, the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and the undoped InGaN layer 14 is, for example, 30 nm + 100 nm + 5 nm = 135 nm, Mg in the p-type layer diffuses into the active layer 7 during crystal growth or aging. Can be effectively suppressed, thereby preventing deterioration of the active layer 7 due to Mg diffusion, reducing the aging degradation rate of the GaN-based semiconductor laser, and improving reliability and yield. Can be achieved.

  Further, since there is an undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 which is a lattice strained layer between the active layer 7 and the p-type layer doped with Mg, this also prevents the Mg in the p-type layer from diffusing into the active layer 7. It is possible to suppress the deterioration of the active layer 7 more effectively.

In addition, the p-type layer doped with Mg generally has lower crystallinity than the n-type layer and is likely to absorb light. Therefore, when the p-type layer is in the vicinity of the active layer 7, the light absorption coefficient α increases. However, since the active layer 7 and the p-type layer are separated by 135 nm as described above, α in the vicinity of the active layer 7 can be suppressed sufficiently low. As a result, the threshold current density J th of the GaN-based semiconductor laser, and hence the threshold current I th , can be reduced, and the slope efficiency can be improved. Furthermore, since the p-type layer doped with Mg having poor crystallinity is sufficiently separated from the vicinity of the active layer 7 having a high light density as described above, the crystal near the active layer 7 is hardly deteriorated by light. The lifetime and reliability of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be improved.

In addition, there is a large lattice constant difference between the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 having a large Al composition ratio of 0.18 and the active layer 7 made of an InGaN layer, but they are separated by 135 nm as described above. Therefore, the strain generated in the active layer 7 due to this lattice constant difference can be relaxed, and the luminous efficiency can be improved. Therefore, by improving the quantum efficiency, the threshold current density J th , and hence the threshold current I th , can be reduced, and the slope efficiency can be improved.

Since the undoped InGaN layer 14 having substantially the same lattice constant as that of the active layer 7 is provided between the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 11, the active layer 7 and the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 are provided. And the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice clad layer 16, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 and the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice clad layer 16 cause the active layer 7. Distortion can be relaxed. For this reason, the threshold current density J th of the GaN-based semiconductor laser, and hence the threshold current I th can be reduced, and the slope efficiency can be improved.

In addition, the noise characteristics of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be improved by reducing the threshold current I th described above.

When electrons injected into the active layer 7 pass through the active layer 7 and reach the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the energy difference ΔE C in the conduction band between the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 and the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9. (FIG. 3) When electrons having a larger energy jump over the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the energy decreases by ΔE C. On the other hand, electrons having energy less than ΔE C cannot jump over the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and remain in the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8. Thus, the energy efficiency and the number of electrons that attempt to jump over the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 can be reduced, thereby improving the slope efficiency of the GaN-based semiconductor laser. Further, it is possible to prevent the GaN-based semiconductor laser from overflowing electrons during high-temperature and high-power driving, and to reduce the operating current, the operating voltage, and the characteristic temperature T 0 of the GaN-based semiconductor laser. .

Further, since all the p-type layer in the ridge 18 is contained in the ridge 18, the operating temperature of the GaN-based semiconductor laser rises, and Mg in these p-type layers is activated and the p-type layer is formed. Even if the resistance is lowered, the current leaking to both sides of the ridge 18 can be suppressed to an extremely low level. For this reason, the characteristic temperature T 0 of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be made significantly higher than that of the conventional GaN-based semiconductor laser. Specifically, the characteristic temperature T 0 can be set to, for example, about 230 K, which is about 90 K higher than the characteristic temperature T 0 of the conventional GaN-based semiconductor laser. This characteristic temperature T 0 of about 230 K is a remarkably high value that has never been obtained so far as compared with semiconductor lasers of other material systems. Furthermore, the slope of the optical output-current characteristic, that is, the slope efficiency, can be considerably increased in this GaN-based semiconductor laser as compared with the conventional GaN-based semiconductor laser.

  The distance between the active layer 7 and the surface of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 (interface between the insulating film 12 and the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9) on both sides of the ridge 18 is the optical characteristic of the GaN-based semiconductor laser, particularly This affects the lateral refractive index difference Δn in the ridge 18 and thus affects the manufacturing yield of the GaN-based semiconductor laser. However, since this distance can be controlled with high accuracy by crystal growth, there is little manufacturing variation. Therefore, the production yield of the GaN semiconductor laser can be improved.

  Further, the width of the ridge is determined by the width of the opening 13 of the insulating film 12. Since the width of the opening 13 can be controlled accurately and easily by wet etching or the like of the insulating film 12, a dry RIE or the like can be used. Productivity is higher than when the ridge is formed by etching, and the manufacturing cost of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be reduced.

  Moreover, since the activation energy of holes in the p-type AlGaN electron block layer 15 is high, most of the holes are inactive at room temperature. However, as the temperature increases, the holes are activated and the electron blocking effect of the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 is enhanced. However, in the conventional GaN-based semiconductor laser, since the amount of current leakage to both sides of the ridge is large, it can be presumed that the above effect was difficult to see. On the other hand, according to this GaN-based semiconductor laser, since the amount of current leakage to both sides of the ridge 18 is extremely small as described above, the electron blocking effect of the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 is high, and high temperature, high Electron overflow can be effectively prevented even during output driving.

Further, as described above, the leakage current at the time of high-temperature driving, that is, the reactive current is reduced, so that the threshold current I th can be reduced and the characteristic temperature T 0 can be improved. A low-noise GaN-based semiconductor laser can be realized even at high temperatures.

Further, as described above, the so-called droop characteristic can be improved by the significant improvement in the characteristic temperature T 0 . This droop characteristic is an important parameter in applying a GaN semiconductor laser to a light source such as a laser beam printer. Even when a plurality of GaN-based semiconductor lasers are integrated adjacent to each other on the same substrate, the characteristic temperature T 0 of the GaN-based semiconductor laser is extremely high. Since talk can be kept low, it is also suitable for applications such as multi-beam lasers.

  Further, since a part of the p-side cladding layer is composed of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the p-type layer existing in the portion on the p-side from the active layer 7 is small as a whole, and thus electrons overflowing from the active layer 7 are generated. In the p-type layer, the probability of non-radiative recombination being trapped by the recombination center is small. Assuming that the higher the temperature, the higher the probability that electrons will be trapped in the p-type layer, this GaN-based semiconductor laser structure is considered to be effective in reducing reactive current.

  In addition, since the above-described slope efficiency and temperature characteristics are improved, electrons are injected into the p-type layer with poor crystallinity doped with Mg due to overflow, and the crystal is less likely to be destroyed. The reliability and life of the product can be improved.

Further, in the growth from the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 to the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 11, the carrier gas atmosphere is an N 2 atmosphere, and since the carrier gas atmosphere does not contain H 2, In is particularly removed from the active layer 7. Separation can be suppressed, deterioration thereof can be prevented, and reliability and lifetime of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be improved.

As described above, it is possible to realize a GaN-based semiconductor laser having a low operating voltage and a threshold current, good temperature characteristics, a long lifetime, and high reliability.
The GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment can reduce the operating current and operating voltage when driving at high temperature and high output, and has a long life. It is suitable for use.

Next explained is a GaN compound semiconductor laser according to the second embodiment of the invention. FIG. 6 shows an energy band diagram of this GaN-based semiconductor laser.
As shown in FIG. 6, in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the second embodiment, an undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 24 is used instead of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment. Is provided. Here, the undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 24 has, for example, an undoped AlGaN layer with a thickness of 2.5 nm as a barrier layer, and a GaN layer with a thickness of 2.5 nm, for example, as a well layer, and these are alternately formed. The average Al composition ratio is, for example, 0.025 to 0.10, and the overall thickness is, for example, 100 to 500 nm. Since other configurations are the same as those of the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, description thereof is omitted.
The method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser is the same as the method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, and thus description thereof is omitted.

  According to the second embodiment, since the undoped layer of the p-side cladding layer is composed of the undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 24, the undoped AlGaN / GaN is injected from the p-side electrode 19 side. The holes that reach the superlattice cladding layer 24 easily pass through the undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 24 by the tunnel effect and are injected into the active layer 7, so that the injection of holes into the active layer 7 is facilitated. Further, the operating voltage of the GaN semiconductor laser can be further reduced. In addition, the heterointerface existing in the undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 24 can more effectively prevent Mg in the p-type layer from diffusing into the active layer 7, thereby further degrading the active layer 7. It can be effectively prevented. Other advantages are the same as those of the first embodiment.

Next explained is a GaN compound semiconductor laser according to the third embodiment of the invention.
The GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the third embodiment basically has the same structure as the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, but includes an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 and a p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding. The thickness of the layer 16 is different from that of the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment. Specifically, in the GaN semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, the thickness of the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 is 30 nm, for example, and the thickness of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is 400 nm, for example. On the other hand, in the GaN semiconductor laser according to the third embodiment, the thickness of the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 is 24.5 nm, for example, and the thickness of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 is 500 nm, for example. . Other configurations are the same as those of the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment.
The method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser is the same as the method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, and a description thereof will be omitted.

  According to the third embodiment, the same advantages as those of the first embodiment can be obtained.

Next explained is a GaN compound semiconductor laser according to the fourth embodiment of the invention. FIG. 7 shows the energy band of this GaN-based semiconductor laser, particularly its conduction band.
As shown in FIG. 7, in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the fourth embodiment, a p-type AlGaN electron block layer 15 is provided in a p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16. That is, in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 is provided at the interface between the undoped InGaN layer 14 and the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16. In the GaN semiconductor laser according to the fourth embodiment, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 is provided in the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 away from the undoped InGaN layer 14. Here, the thickness of the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 existing between the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 and the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15 is, for example, about 10 to 50 nm. Other configurations are the same as those of the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment.
The method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser is the same as the method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment, and a description thereof will be omitted.
According to the fourth embodiment, the same advantages as those of the first embodiment can be obtained.

  Next explained is a GaN compound semiconductor laser according to the fifth embodiment of the invention. This GaN-based semiconductor laser has a ridge structure and an SCH structure formed by selective growth, but differs from the first to fourth embodiments in that an n-type GaN substrate is used as the substrate. FIG. 8 shows this GaN-based semiconductor laser.

As shown in FIG. 8, in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the fifth embodiment, an n-type GaN layer 26 doped with, for example, Si as an n-type impurity is formed on an n-type GaN substrate 25 having a c-plane orientation, for example. Provided as a buffer layer (different from the buffer layer by low-temperature growth), an n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5 and an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 as an n-side optical waveguide layer, for example, undoped In x Ga 1-x N / in y Ga 1-y N multi quantum well active layer 7 of the structure, the p-side optical waveguide layer as an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 and the p-side undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 as a cladding layer, which are sequentially stacked.

On the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, an insulating film 12 such as a SiO 2 film is provided as a growth mask. For example, a stripe-shaped opening 13 extending in the <1-100> direction is formed in a predetermined portion of the insulating film 12. At the opening 13, a thin undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, an undoped InGaN layer 14, a p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, and a p-type AlGaN / GaN as a p-side cladding layer on the underlying undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9. A superlattice cladding layer 16 and a p-type GaN contact layer 17 are sequentially stacked by selective growth to form, for example, a ridge 18 extending in the <1-100> direction.

A p-side electrode 19 is provided extending on the insulating film 12 so as to cover the p-type GaN contact layer 17. On the other hand, the n-side electrode 23 is in contact with the back surface of the n-type GaN substrate 25.
Since other than the above is the same as that of the first embodiment, the description is omitted.

Next explained is a GaN semiconductor laser manufacturing method according to the fifth embodiment.
First, an n-type AlGaN cladding layer 5, an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6, an undoped Ga 1-x In x N / Ga 1-y are formed on an n-type GaN substrate 25 whose surface has been previously cleaned by thermal cleaning or the like by MOCVD. An active layer 7, an undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8, and an undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9 having an In y N multiple quantum well structure are sequentially grown.

  Next, after an insulating film 12 is formed on the entire surface of the undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, an opening 13 is formed in the insulating film 12 by etching. Next, using the insulating film 12 having the opening 13 as a growth mask, the thin undoped AlGaN cladding layer 9, the undoped InGaN layer 14, the p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer 15, and the p-type AlGaN as a p-side cladding layer, for example, by MOCVD. The / GaN superlattice cladding layer 16 and the p-type GaN contact layer 17 are selectively grown sequentially.

Next, the c-plane sapphire substrate 1 on which the GaN-based semiconductor layer is grown as described above is taken out from the MOCVD apparatus. Then, the p-side electrode 19 is formed on the entire surface of the ridge 18 and the insulating film 12.
Next, the n-side electrode 23 is formed on the back surface of the n-type GaN substrate 25.

After that, the substrate on which the laser structure is formed as described above is processed into a bar shape by cleaving or the like to form both resonator end faces, and after applying end face coating to these resonator end faces, A chip is formed by cleavage.
As described above, the GaN-based semiconductor laser having the target ridge structure and SCH structure is manufactured.
Other than the above-described method for manufacturing the GaN-based semiconductor laser is the same as that in the first embodiment.

  According to the fifth embodiment, the same advantages as in the first embodiment can be obtained, and similarly to the GaAs semiconductor laser, for example, the p-side electrode 19 and the n-side electrode 23 are respectively formed on the surface of the substrate and Since the structure can be formed on the back surface, a bonding apparatus used for assembling a GaAs semiconductor laser can be used, and there is no need to introduce an assembling apparatus such as a special bonding apparatus. The advantage that the manufacturing cost of the semiconductor laser can be reduced can be obtained. Furthermore, since the chip size can be reduced, the manufacturing cost of the GaN-based semiconductor laser can be reduced accordingly.

  As mentioned above, although embodiment of this invention was described concretely, this invention is not limited to the above-mentioned embodiment, The various deformation | transformation based on the technical idea of this invention is possible.

  For example, the numerical values, structures, shapes, substrates, raw materials, processes and the like given in the first to fifth embodiments are merely examples, and if necessary, different numerical values, structures, shapes, substrates, Raw materials, processes, etc. may be used.

  Specifically, for example, in the above-described first to fifth embodiments, an n-type layer for forming a laser structure is first laminated on a substrate, and a p-type layer is laminated thereon, The stacking order may be reversed, and a p-type layer may be first stacked on the substrate, and an n-type layer may be stacked thereon.

  In the first to fifth embodiments described above, the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 as the n-side optical waveguide layer and the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 as the p-side optical waveguide layer have the same composition. The composition of the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 6 and the undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer 8 may be different from each other as long as good optical characteristics can be obtained. It may be lower than the layer 6. Furthermore, a material having a composition different from that of InGaN, for example, GaN, may be used as a material for the n-side optical waveguide layer and the p-side optical waveguide layer as necessary.

  In the first to fourth embodiments described above, the c-plane sapphire substrate is used, but an SiC substrate, Si substrate, spinel substrate, or the like may be used as necessary. Further, an AlN buffer layer or an AlGaN buffer layer may be used instead of the GaN buffer layer.

  In the first to fifth embodiments described above, the present invention has been described with reference to the case where the present invention is applied to a GaN semiconductor laser having an SCH structure. Of course, it may be applied to a GaN-based light emitting diode.

  Further, in the above-described first to fifth embodiments, in the p-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer 12, the AlGaN layer is not doped with Mg. Alternatively, Mg may not be doped into the GaN layer, and Mg may be doped only into the AlGaN layer.

1 is a cross-sectional view showing a GaN-based semiconductor laser according to a first embodiment of the present invention. It is an expanded sectional view of the important section of the GaN system semiconductor laser by a 1st embodiment of this invention. It is a basic diagram which shows the energy band structure of the GaN-type semiconductor laser by 1st Embodiment of this invention. It is a basic diagram which shows the change of the operating voltage by the thickness of the undoped layer of the p side cladding layer in the GaN-type semiconductor laser by 1st Embodiment of this invention. It is a basic diagram which shows the change of the aging degradation rate by the thickness of the undoped layer of the p-side cladding layer in the GaN-based semiconductor laser according to the first embodiment of the present invention. It is a basic diagram which shows the energy band structure of the GaN-type semiconductor laser by 2nd Embodiment of this invention. It is a basic diagram which shows the energy band structure of the GaN-type semiconductor laser by 4th Embodiment of this invention. It is sectional drawing which shows the GaN-type semiconductor laser by 5th Embodiment of this invention. It is sectional drawing which shows the principal part of the conventional GaN-type semiconductor laser which forms a ridge structure by selective growth. It is sectional drawing for demonstrating the problem of the conventional GaN-type semiconductor laser which forms a ridge structure by selective growth.

Explanation of symbols

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 1 ... c-plane sapphire substrate, 4 ... n-type GaN contact layer, 5 ... n-type AlGaN clad layer, 6 ... Undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer, 7 ... Active layer, 8 ... Undoped InGaN optical waveguide layer, 9 ... undoped AlGaN cladding layer, 12 ... insulating film, 13 ... opening, 14 ... undoped InGaN layer, 15 ... p-type AlGaN electron blocking layer, 16 ... P-type AlGaN / GaN superlattice clad layer, 17 ... p-type GaN contact layer, 18 ... ridge, 19 ... p-side electrode, 20 ... insulating film, 23 ... n-side electrode, 24... Undoped AlGaN / GaN superlattice cladding layer, 25... N-type GaN substrate

Claims (6)

  1. an n-side cladding layer;
    An active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
    A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
    A ridge formed by selective growth on the p-side cladding layer;
    The p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity in order from the active layer side, and the second layer is the first layer. A third layer having a larger band gap than the two layers;
    A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, wherein the growth interface of the ridge is included in the first layer,
    A method of manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device, wherein the growth from the active layer to the third layer is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component.
  2. The substantially free of hydrogen, the method of manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device according to claim 1, wherein the carrier gas atmosphere mainly composed of nitrogen is N 2 gas atmosphere.
  3. an n-side cladding layer;
    An active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
    A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
    The p-side cladding layer has a ridge formed by selective growth;
    The p-side cladding layer comprises an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity sequentially from the active layer side,
    A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride III-V compound semiconductor, wherein the growth interface of the ridge is included in the first layer,
    The method for producing a semiconductor light emitting device, wherein the growth from the active layer to the first layer is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component.
  4. The substantially free of hydrogen, the method of manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device according to claim 3, wherein the carrier gas atmosphere, characterized in that the N 2 gas atmosphere mainly composed of nitrogen.
  5. an n-side cladding layer;
    An active layer on the n-side cladding layer;
    A p-side cladding layer on the active layer,
    A ridge formed by selective growth on the p-side cladding layer;
    The distance between the active layer and the p-type layer doped with the p-type impurity closest to the active layer and having a band gap larger than that of the p-side cladding layer is 50 nm or more. The p-type layer having a larger band gap than the p-side cladding layer is located between the active layer and the p-side cladding layer when the entire p-side cladding layer is a p-type layer, When the p-side cladding layer is composed of an undoped or n-type first layer and a p-type second layer doped with a p-type impurity sequentially from the active layer side, the first layer and the second layer A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device using a nitride-based III-V group compound semiconductor,
    The growth from the active layer to the p-type layer having a larger band gap than the p-side cladding layer is performed in a carrier gas atmosphere containing substantially no hydrogen and containing nitrogen as a main component. A method for manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device.
  6. The substantially free of hydrogen, the method of manufacturing a semiconductor light emitting device according to claim 5, wherein the carrier gas atmosphere, characterized in that the N 2 gas atmosphere mainly composed of nitrogen.
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