RP Photonics logo
RP Photonics
Technical consulting services on lasers, nonlinear optics, fiber optics etc.
Profit from the knowledge and experience of a top expert!
Powerful simulation and design software.
Make computer models in order to get a comprehensive understanding of your devices!
Success comes from understanding – be it in science or in industrial development.
The famous Encyclopedia of Laser Physics and Technology – available online for free!
The ideal place for finding suppliers for many photonics products.
Advertisers: Make sure to have your products displayed here!
… combined with a great Buyer's Guide!
VLib part of the


<<<  |  >>>

Acronym: PL

Definition: emission of light which is caused by the irradiation of a material with other light

German: Photolumineszenz

Category: physical foundations

How to cite the article; suggest additional literature

Photoluminescence is the emission of light which is caused by the irradiation of a substance with other light. The term embraces both fluorescence and phosphorescence, which differ in the time after irradiation over which the luminescence occurs.

Photoluminescence is often used in the context of semiconductor devices (e.g. semiconductor lasers or amplifiers, solar cells, or saturable absorbers). Here, photoluminescence is excited by illumination of the device with light which has a photon energy above the bandgap energy. The photoluminescence then occurs for wavelengths around the bandgap wavelength. The optical spectrum of the photoluminescence (PL spectrum) and also the dependence of its intensity on the irradiation intensity and device temperature can deliver important information for device characterization. In particular, PL spectra and their intensity dependencies can allow one

Photoluminescence mappers (PL mappers) can spatially resolve the photoluminescence, e.g. from epitaxially grown wafers. PL maps can reveal, e.g., a radial dependency of layer thickness or material composition.

See also: fluorescence
and other articles in the category physical foundations

If you like this article, share it with your friends and colleagues, e.g. via social media: