A substrate is used to fabricate a low-cost laser diode array. A substrate is machined from an electrically insulative material that is thermally conductive, or two substrates can be bonded together in which the top substrate is electrically as well as thermally conductive. The substrate thickness is slightly longer than the cavity length, and the width of the groove is wide enough to contain a bar and spring (which secures the laser bar firmly along one face of the groove). The spring also provides electrical continuity from the backside of the bar to the adjacent metalization layer on the laser bar substrate. Arrays containing one or more bars can be formed by creating many grooves at various spacings. Along the groove, many bars can be adjoined at the edges to provide parallel electrical conduction. This architecture allows precise and predictable registration of an array of laser bars to a self-aligned microlens array at low cost.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.