Quantum Cascade Lasers (QCLs) have been very successful at long wavelengths, >4μm, and there is now considerable effort to develop QCLs for short wavelength (2-3μm) applications. To optimise both interband and QC lasers it is important to understand the role of radiative and non-radiative processes and their variation with wavelength and temperature. We use high hydrostatic pressure to manipulate the band structure of lasers to identify the dominant efficiency limiting processes. We describe how hydrostatic pressure may also be used to vary the separation between the Γ, Χ and L bands, allowing one to investigate the role of inter-valley carrier scattering on the properties of QCLs. We will describe an example of how pressure can be used to investigate the properties of 2.9-3.3μm InAs/AlSb QCLs. We find that while the threshold current of the 3.3μm devices shows little pressure variation even at room temperature, for the 2.9μm devices the threshold current increases by ~20% over 4kbar at 190K consistent with carrier scattering into the L-minima. Based on our high pressure studies, we conclude that the maximum operating temperature of InAs/AlSb QCLs decreases with decreasing wavelength due to increased carrier scattering into the L-minima of InAs.© (2009) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.