Hard Radiation Detection from the Selenophosphate Pb2P2Se6

Peng L. Wang, Zhifu Liu, Pice Chen, John A. Peters, Gangjian Tan, Jino Im, Wenwen Lin, Arthur J Freeman, Bruce W Wessels, Mercouri Kanatzidis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The heavy metal selenophosphate, Pb2P2Se6, is a promising new material for cost-effective X-ray/γ-ray detection. Crystal boules of Pb2P2Se6 up to 25 mm in length and 15 mm in diameter are grown by a vertical Bridgman method. They are cut and processed into size-appropriate wafers for physical, photo-transport property studies, as well as γ-ray detector testing. The material is a semiconductor with an indirect bandgap of 1.88 eV and has electrical resistivity in the range of 1 × 1010 Ω cm. Pb2P2Se6 single crystal samples display a significant photoconductivity response to optical, X-ray, and γ-ray radiation. When tested with a 57Co γ-ray source, Pb2P2Se6 crystals show spectroscopic response and several generated pulse height spectra resolving the 122.1 and 136.5 keV 57Co radiation. The mobility-lifetime product of Pb2P2Se6 is estimated to be ≈3.5 × 10-5 cm2 V-1 for electron carriers. The Pb2P2Se6 compound melts congruently at 812 °C and has robust chemical/physical properties that promise low cost bulk production and detector development. Wide bandgap selenophosphate Pb2P2Se6 is identified as a cost-effective X-ray and γ-ray detector material. The crystal growth of Pb2P2Se6 and characterizations in terms of its optical, electrical, thermal, and mechanical properties are reported. A Pb2P2Se6 single crystal detector is able to resolve 57Co radiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4874-4881
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number30
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015


  • chalcogenides
  • chalcophosphate
  • gamma-ray detectors
  • semiconductors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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