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Optical Engineering

Update on linear mode photon counting with the HgCdTe linear mode avalanche photodiode
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Paper Abstract

The behavior of the gain-voltage characteristic of the mid-wavelength infrared cutoff HgCdTe linear mode avalanche photodiode (e-APD) is discussed both experimentally and theoretically as a function of the width of the multiplication region. Data are shown that demonstrate a strong dependence of the gain at a given bias voltage on the width of the n − gain region. Geometrical and fundamental theoretical models are examined to explain this behavior. The geometrical model takes into account the gain-dependent optical fill factor of the cylindrical APD. The theoretical model is based on the ballistic ionization model being developed for the HgCdTe APD. It is concluded that the fundamental theoretical explanation is the dominant effect. A model is developed that combines both the geometrical and fundamental effects. The model also takes into account the effect of the varying multiplication width in the low bias region of the gain-voltage curve. It is concluded that the lower than expected gain seen in the first 2×8 HgCdTe linear mode photon counting APD arrays, and higher excess noise factor, was very likely due to the larger than typical multiplication region length in the photon counting APD pixel design. The implications of these effects on device photon counting performance are discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 April 2014
PDF: 7 pages
Opt. Eng. 53(8) 081906 doi: 10.1117/1.OE.53.8.081906
Published in: Optical Engineering Volume 53, Issue 8
Show Author Affiliations
Jeffrey D. Beck, DRS Technologies, Inc. (United States)
Michael A. Kinch, DRS Technologies, Inc. (United States)
Xiaoli Sun, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

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