GaN avalanche photodiodes (APDs) were grown on both conventional sapphire and low dislocation density free-standing (FS) c-plane GaN substrates. Leakage current, gain, and single photon detection efficiency (SPDE) of these APDs were compared. At a reverse-bias of 70 V, APDs grown on sapphire substrates exhibited a dark current density of 2.7× 10-4 A/ cm2 whereas APDs grown on FS-GaN substrates had a significantly lower dark current density of 2.1× 10-6 A/ cm2. Under linear-mode operation, APDs grown on FS-GaN achieved avalanche gain as high as 14 000. Geiger-mode operation conditions were studied for enhanced SPDE. Under front-illumination the 625-μ m2 -area APD yielded a SPDE of ∼13% when grown on sapphire substrates compared to more than 24% when grown on FS-GaN. The SPDE of the same APD on sapphire substrate increased to ∼30% under back-illumination-the FS-GaN APDs were only tested under front illumination due to the thick absorbing GaN substrate.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)