Document Type




Publication Date



Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE)

Source Publication

IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics

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The recurrence theory for the breakdown probability in avalanche photodiodes (APDs) is generalized to heterostructure APDs that may have multiple multiplication layers. The generalization addresses layer-boundary effects such as the initial energy of injected carriers as well as the layer-dependent profile of the dead space in the multiplication region. Reducing the width of the multiplication layer serves to both downshift and sharpen the breakdown probability curve as a function of the applied reverse-bias voltage. In structures where the injected carriers have an initial energy that is comparable to the ionization threshold energy, the transition from linear mode to Geiger-mode is more abrupt than in structures in which such initial energy is negligible. The theory is applied to two recently fabricated Al 0.6 Ga 0.4 As-GaAs heterostructure APDs and to other homostructure thin GaAs APDs and the predictions of the breakdown-voltage thresholds are verified.


Accepted version. IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics, Vol. 39, No. 1 (2003): 179-185. DOI. © 2003 Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE). Used with permission.

Majeed M. Hayat was affiliated the the University of New Mexico at the time of publication.

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