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Proceedings Paper

Laser Controlled Semiconductor Closing And Opening Switch
Author(s): K. II. Schoenbach; V. K. Lakdawala; S. T. Ko; M. S. Mazzola; R. K. F Germer
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Paper Abstract

Optically controlled bulk semiconductor switches have the potential to replace plasma switches in applications where fast (nanosecond) response, remote control and fast recovery are important. A concept for an optically controlled closing and opening switch is presented, where laser radiation is not used to sustain the switch conductance, but to drive the switch into and out of the conductive state. The concept is based on photoexcitation of electrons and holes, respectively from deep centers. Photoconductance measurements on cadmium sulfide doped with copper (CdS:Cu) have proved the feasibility of using stimulated electron-hole recombination as mechanism for opening a semiconductor switch. Besides CdS:Cu, gallium arsenide (GaAs) doped with copper (Cu) and silicon (Si) is used as a switch material. The steady state and transient behavior of such a GaAs:Cu:Si switch has been modeled using a system of rate equations. From the calculations it is seen that an increase or decrease in conductivity by several orders of magnitude can be achieved with laser power in the range of MW/cm2. The theoretical results are compared with the actual performance of optically controlled GaAs:Cu:Si switches.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 April 1988
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 0871, Space Structures, Power, and Power Conditioning, (6 April 1988); doi: 10.1117/12.943642
Show Author Affiliations
K. II. Schoenbach, Old Dominion University (United States)
V. K. Lakdawala, Old Dominion University (United States)
S. T. Ko, Old Dominion University (United States)
M. S. Mazzola, Old Dominion University (United States)
R. K. F Germer, Old Dominion University (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0871:
Space Structures, Power, and Power Conditioning
Raymond F. Askew, Editor(s)

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