EECS 529: Semiconductor Lasers and LEDs

Instructor: Professor P.C. Ku

This course covers advanced and state-of-the-art topics in modern optoelectronic devices including semiconductor lasers, light-emitting diodes (LEDs), photodetectors, solar cells, and optical modulators. Familiarity with the Maxwell’s equations and semiconductor pn junctions at the undergraduate level is assumed.

Chuang, Shun Lien. Physics of Photonic Devices. 2nd ed. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2009.


  • Overview of modern optoelectronic devices and their underlying electron-photon interactions
  • Basic physical principles governing electron-photon interactions
    • Review of electromagnetics, quantum mechanics, and statistical mechanics
    • Electrons in free and confined states
    • Photons in free and confined states
    • Electron-photon interaction in semiconductors, dielectrics, metals and meta-materials
    • Phonons
  • Basic photonic structures
    • Optical waveguides
    • Optical cavities
    • Sub-wavelength structures and meta-materials
  • Optical absorption
  • Optical amplification
  • Design and properties of optoelectronic devices
    • Heterostructures
    • Light-emitting diodes
    • Semiconductor lasers
    • Photodetectors and solar cells
    • Optical modulators
  • Fabrication and characterization of optoelectronic devices
    • Overview of technology
    • Thermal management and failure mechanism