High injection and carrier pile-up in lattice matched InGaAs/InP PN diodes for thermophotovoltaic applications
Kwan, V. W.
Corbett, Brian M.
This article analyzes and explains the observed temperature dependence of the forward dark current of lattice matched In0.53Ga0.47As on InP diodes as a function of voltage. The experimental results show, at high temperatures, the characteristic current-voltage (I-V) curve corresponding to leakage, recombination, and diffusion currents, but at low temperatures an additional region is seen at high fields. We show that the onset of this region commences with high injection into the lower-doped base region. The high injection is shown by using simulation software to substantially alter the minority carrier concentration profile in the base, emitter and consequently the quasi-Fermi levels (QFL) at the base/window and the window/cap heterojunctions. We show that this QFL splitting and the associated electron "pile-up" (accumulation) at the window/emitter heterojunction leads to the observed pseudo-n=2 region of the current-voltage curve. We confirm this phenomenon by investigating the I-V-T characteristics of diodes with an InGaAsP quaternary layer (E-g=1 eV) inserted between the InP window (E-g=1.35 eV) and the InGaAs emitter (E-g=0.72 eV) where it serves to reduce the barrier to injected electrons, thereby reducing the "pile-up." We show, in this case that the high injection occurs at a higher voltage and lower temperature than for the ternary device, thereby confirming the role of the "accumulation" in the change of the I-V characteristics from n=1 to pseudo-n=2 in the ternary latticed matched device. This is an important phenomenon for consideration in thermophotovoltaic applications. We, also show that the activation energy at medium and high voltages corresponds to the InP/InGaAs conduction band offset at the window/emitter heterointerface.
Heterojunction , Model , III-V semiconductors , High voltage diodes , Heterojunctions , Electrical properties , Diffusion
Ginige, R., Cherkaoui, K., Kwan, V. W., Kelleher, C. and Corbett, B. (2004) 'High injection and carrier pile-up in lattice matched InGaAs/InP PN diodes for thermophotovoltaic applications', Journal of Applied Physics, 95(5), pp. 2809-2815. doi: 10.1063/1.1644905
© 2004 American Institute of Physics, This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and AIP Publishing. The following article appeared in Ginige, R., Cherkaoui, K., Kwan, V. W., Kelleher, C. and Corbett, B. (2004) 'High injection and carrier pile-up in lattice matched InGaAs/InP PN diodes for thermophotovoltaic applications', Journal of Applied Physics, 95(5), pp. 2809-2815 and may be found at http://aip.scitation.org/doi/abs/10.1063/1.1644905