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Advances in Condensed Matter Physics
Volume 2013, Article ID 597265, 10 pages
Research Article

Surface-Assisted Luminescence: The PL Yellow Band and the EL of n-GaN Devices

Department of Aerospace Systems, Infr. and Airports, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Received 7 May 2013; Accepted 2 September 2013

Academic Editor: Xia Xiang

Copyright © 2013 José Ignacio Izpura. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Although everybody should know that measurements are never performed directly on materials but on devices, this is not generally true. Devices are physical systems able to exchange energy and thus subject to the laws of physics, which determine the information they provide. Hence, we should not overlook device effects in measurements as we do by assuming naively that photoluminescence (PL) is bulk emission free from surface effects. By replacing this unjustified assumption with a proper model for GaN surface devices, their yellow band PL becomes surface-assisted luminescence that allows for the prediction of the weak electroluminescence recently observed in n-GaN devices when holes are brought to their surfaces.