In the past 30 years, organic conjugated molecules have received a lot of attention in research because of their unique combination of active properties typical of semiconductors and the technological appeal typical of plastic materials. Among the different applications proposed for organic materials, organic lasers are quickly approaching the performance required in real devices, while research on novel active materials is still ongoing.
The book covers the basic aspects of the measurement techniques of optical gain and amplified spontaneous emission (ASE) in organic films as well as the photophysics of organic materials that can be understood using ASE measurements. It reviews the recent advances in the development of new active materials for organic lasers as well as the actual state of the art of scattering-assisted random lasers and of strongly coupled organic microcavities, both promising interesting developments in the near future. Finally, it gives a detailed review of the state of the art of the organic lasers actually closest to real applications, namely external cavity lasers and distributed feedback lasers. The book is unique that it covers basic aspects, technological aspects, and systems, which are still a subject of basic science research.