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High power, high speed, optically activated switches incorporating only semiconductor devices are small, efficient, and reasonable in cost. They consist of a 2D laser diode array activating a semiconductor switch with an integrated optical port. Several types of semiconductor switch devices are useful. Si PIN diodes with long carrier lifetime provide the means for cw switching kilo-watts of rf power with pulsed laser diode arrays which require only a few watts of average power. DC biased, Si PIN diodes are also useful in controlling up to a mega-watt of power into a load for short ns bursts. Pulsed biased GaAs devices, utilizing the phenomenon of lock-on, are used for controlling up to mega-watts of power into a load for short ns bursts. An overview of these types of switches will be described.