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We report continuous-wave (CW) operation of quantum-cascade lasers (/spl lambda/=6 μm) up to a temperature of 313 K (40/spl deg/C). The maximum CW optical output powers range from 212 mW at 288 K to 22 mW at 313 K and are achieved with threshold current densities of 2.21 and 3.11 kA/cm2, respectively, for a high-reflectivity-coated 12-μm-wide and 2-mm-long laser. At room temperature (298 K), the power output is 145 mW at 0.87 A, corresponding to a power conversion efficiency of 1.68%. The maximum CW operating temperature of double-channel ridge waveguide lasers mounted epilayer-up on copper heatsinks is analyzed in terms of the ridge width, which is varied between 12 and 40 μm. A clear trend of improved performance is observed as the ridge narrows.