Toward Electrically Pumped Organic Lasers: A Review and Outlook on Material Developments and Resonator Architectures

Qi Zhang, Wenwen Tao, Jingsong Huang, Ruidong Xia, Juan Cabanillas-Gonzalez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Organic lasers have undergone decades of development. A myriad of materials with excellent optical gain properties, including small molecules, dendrimers, and polymers, have been demonstrated. Various resonator geometries have also been applied. While sharing the advantages of the solution processability and mechanical flexibility features of organic materials, organic optical gain media also offer interesting optical properties, such as emission tunability through chemical functionalization and inherent large optical gain coefficients. They offer prospects for different applications in the fields of bioimaging, medicine, chemo- and biosensing, anticounterfeit applications, or displays. However, the realization of electrically pumped organic lasers still remains a challenge due to the inherent drawbacks of organic semiconductors, e.g., modest carrier mobility, long-lived excited-state absorption, and extra losses which originate in the device (e.g., absorption from metal electrodes). Herein, the past developments of organic lasers are discussed, highlighting the importance of materials and cavities with regard to the goal of electrically pumped organic lasers. The latest progress and the possible ways to address the challenge are discussed.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2000155
JournalAdvanced Photonics Research
StatePublished - Feb 25 2021

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-03-01
Acknowledgements: R.X. acknowledges funding from National Natural Science Foundation of China (grants 61874058, 51861145301, 61376023), the Synergetic Innovation Center for Organic Electronics and Information Displays, and the Priority Academic Program Development Fund of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD-YX030003) in China. J.C.-G. acknowledges support from the Regional Government of Madrid through NMAT2D-CM project (S2018/NMT-4511) and RTI2018-097508-B-I00 (AMAPOLA). IMDEA Nanociencia acknowledges support from the “Severo Ochoa” Programme for Centers of Excellence in R&D (MINECO, grant SEV-2016-0686).


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