Optical nonlinearity in tandem Si-C photodetectors

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The behavior of tandem pin heterojunctions based on a-SiC:H alloys is investigated under different optical and electrical bias conditions. The devices are optimized to act as optically selective wavelength filters. Depending on the device configuration (optical gaps, thickness, sequence of cells in the stack structure) and on the applied voltage (positive or negative) and optical bias (wavelength, intensity, frequency) it is possible to combine the wavelength discrimination function with the self amplification of the signal. This wavelength nonlinearity allows the amplification or the rejection of a weak signal-impulse. The device works as an active tunable optical filter for wavelength selection and can be used as an add/drop multiplexer (ADM) which enables data to enter and leave an optical network bit stream without having to demultiplex the stream. Results show that, even under weak transient input signals, the background wavelength controls the output signal. This nonlinearity, due to the transient asymmetrical light penetration of the input channels across the device together with the modification on the electrical field profile due to the optical bias, allows tuning an input channel without demultiplexing the stream. This high optical nonlinearity makes the optimized devices attractive for the amplification of all optical signals. Transfer characteristics effects due to changes in steady state light, control d.c. voltage and applied light pulses are presented. Based on the experimental results and device configuration an optoelectronic model is developed. The transfer characteristics effects due to changes in steady state light, dc control voltage or applied light pulses are simulated and compared with the experimental data. A good agreement was achieved
Original languageUnknown
Pages (from-to)2054-2057
Journalphysica status solidi (c)
Issue number10-11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012

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