Optimization of Superlattice Barrier HgCdTe nBn Infrared Photodetectors Based on an NEGF Approach

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Abstract

Unipolar nBn photodetector structures have recently emerged as a viable alternative to the traditional p-n junction infrared photodiode approach. However, realization of a unipolar nBn detector technology using the mercury-cadmium-telluride (HgCdTe) alloy system is a challenging task because of the lack of a barrier material with a favorable valence band offset. In this paper, advanced quantum mechanical calculations, based on the nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF) formalism, are used to demonstrate that it is possible to achieve diffusion-limited dark current performance in HgCdTe nBn detectors by incorporating a type-III HgTe/CdTe superlattice (SL) barrier layer. Optimal design parameters for CdTe layer thickness, HgTe layer thickness, and total number of periods are presented in order to achieve maximum hole current transmission through the barrier layer, and therefore diffusion-limited dark current performance. The NEGF simulation framework herein presented allows greater insight into effects associated with electron and hole wave function propagation in the SL barrier layer as well as the calculation of individual carrier current components. The presented results form a good basis for the fabrication of high-performance SL barrier HgCdTe nBn detectors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)591 - 598
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Electron Devices
Volume65
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

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Photodetectors
Green's function
Dark currents
Infrared radiation
Detectors
Cadmium telluride
Mercury (metal)
Wave functions
Valence bands
Photodiodes
Fabrication
Electrons

Cite this

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title = "Optimization of Superlattice Barrier HgCdTe nBn Infrared Photodetectors Based on an NEGF Approach",
abstract = "Unipolar nBn photodetector structures have recently emerged as a viable alternative to the traditional p-n junction infrared photodiode approach. However, realization of a unipolar nBn detector technology using the mercury-cadmium-telluride (HgCdTe) alloy system is a challenging task because of the lack of a barrier material with a favorable valence band offset. In this paper, advanced quantum mechanical calculations, based on the nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF) formalism, are used to demonstrate that it is possible to achieve diffusion-limited dark current performance in HgCdTe nBn detectors by incorporating a type-III HgTe/CdTe superlattice (SL) barrier layer. Optimal design parameters for CdTe layer thickness, HgTe layer thickness, and total number of periods are presented in order to achieve maximum hole current transmission through the barrier layer, and therefore diffusion-limited dark current performance. The NEGF simulation framework herein presented allows greater insight into effects associated with electron and hole wave function propagation in the SL barrier layer as well as the calculation of individual carrier current components. The presented results form a good basis for the fabrication of high-performance SL barrier HgCdTe nBn detectors.",
keywords = "Infrared (IR) detector, mercury-cadmium-telluride (HgCdTe), nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF), quantum transport, superlattice (SL) barrier, unipolar barrier.",
author = "{Dehdashti Akhavan}, Nima and Umana-Membreno, {Gilberto A.} and Renjie Gu and Jarek Antoszewski and Lorenzo Faraone",
year = "2018",
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doi = "10.1109/TED.2017.2785827",
language = "English",
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pages = "591 -- 598",
journal = "IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices",
issn = "0018-9383",
publisher = "IEEE, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers",
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T1 - Optimization of Superlattice Barrier HgCdTe nBn Infrared Photodetectors Based on an NEGF Approach

AU - Dehdashti Akhavan, Nima

AU - Umana-Membreno, Gilberto A.

AU - Gu, Renjie

AU - Antoszewski, Jarek

AU - Faraone, Lorenzo

PY - 2018/2

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N2 - Unipolar nBn photodetector structures have recently emerged as a viable alternative to the traditional p-n junction infrared photodiode approach. However, realization of a unipolar nBn detector technology using the mercury-cadmium-telluride (HgCdTe) alloy system is a challenging task because of the lack of a barrier material with a favorable valence band offset. In this paper, advanced quantum mechanical calculations, based on the nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF) formalism, are used to demonstrate that it is possible to achieve diffusion-limited dark current performance in HgCdTe nBn detectors by incorporating a type-III HgTe/CdTe superlattice (SL) barrier layer. Optimal design parameters for CdTe layer thickness, HgTe layer thickness, and total number of periods are presented in order to achieve maximum hole current transmission through the barrier layer, and therefore diffusion-limited dark current performance. The NEGF simulation framework herein presented allows greater insight into effects associated with electron and hole wave function propagation in the SL barrier layer as well as the calculation of individual carrier current components. The presented results form a good basis for the fabrication of high-performance SL barrier HgCdTe nBn detectors.

AB - Unipolar nBn photodetector structures have recently emerged as a viable alternative to the traditional p-n junction infrared photodiode approach. However, realization of a unipolar nBn detector technology using the mercury-cadmium-telluride (HgCdTe) alloy system is a challenging task because of the lack of a barrier material with a favorable valence band offset. In this paper, advanced quantum mechanical calculations, based on the nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF) formalism, are used to demonstrate that it is possible to achieve diffusion-limited dark current performance in HgCdTe nBn detectors by incorporating a type-III HgTe/CdTe superlattice (SL) barrier layer. Optimal design parameters for CdTe layer thickness, HgTe layer thickness, and total number of periods are presented in order to achieve maximum hole current transmission through the barrier layer, and therefore diffusion-limited dark current performance. The NEGF simulation framework herein presented allows greater insight into effects associated with electron and hole wave function propagation in the SL barrier layer as well as the calculation of individual carrier current components. The presented results form a good basis for the fabrication of high-performance SL barrier HgCdTe nBn detectors.

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KW - nonequilibrium Green's function (NEGF)

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