Data and a phenomenological model for quantum-well (QW) transistor laser operation are presented showing, via the three-port input-output (electrical and optical) characteristics, the strong QW to collector coupling and the influence of bandfilling (QW states, Δhν recombination radiation, sensitivity of Eλ0Eλ1,λ0λ1,λ0>λ1) on base-to-collector photon-assisted tunneling and laser operation. Transistor (electrical) and laser (optical) operation are locked and “slide” up and down as a function of base current (IB), collector-base voltage (VBC or VCE), and the influence of QW bandfilling (with increased sensitivity at Eλ0Eλ1) on photon-assisted base-collector tunneling.

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