Dark Currents in Long Wavelength Infrared HgCdTe Gated Photodiodes

Thuyen Nguyen, Charles Musca, John Dell, Jarek Antoszewski, Lorenzo Faraone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


The fabrication of HgCdTe photodiodes using plasma-induced p-to-n type conversion for junction formation shows promise in improving array uniformity and device yields in comparison to more traditional fabrication technologies. Previously, characterization and analysis of the diode current-voltage (I-V) characteristics of fabricated devices have given indications that surface-leakage current mechanisms are limiting device performance. To further investigate the effectiveness of the surface passivation. employed in the fabrication process, gated-diode structures have been fabricated. The gated-diode structure enables the semiconductor surface potential to be varied, thus allowing the characteristics of surface-leakage currents and their effect on device performance to be evaluated. The long wavelength infrared (LWIR) HgCdTe gated photodiodes used in this study have been characterized using I-V measurements for variable gate-bias voltage and variable temperature. Analysis of the experimental results indicates that plasma-induced type conversion produces an n (lightly doped)-on-p junction that is highly susceptible to a trapped positive charge in the passivation layer, which results in increased surface-tunneling currents. Modeling of the various dark-current mechanisms is used to show the effect on dark-current generation of the surface band bending induced by variations in surface potential. In addition, temperature-dependent I-V measurements and analysis have also been conducted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)621-629
JournalJournal of Electronic Materials
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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