We prepared urchin-like micron-sized ZnO cavities with high optical quality by oxidizing metallic Zn and proposed the mechanism that resulted in the growth of the urchin-like microstructures. The photoluminescence spectra of the ZnO microstructures had a predominant excitonic emission at room temperature. The lasing properties of the urchin-like ZnO microstructures were investigated systematically through excitation power- and size-dependent photoluminescence measurements. The results showed that a low lasing threshold with high quality factors could be achieved because of the high reflectivity of the optical reflectors formed by the tapered nanowires. The unique optical characteristics may facilitate the development of high-efficiency random lasers.
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