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Sensors 2013, 13(7), 9464-9482; https://doi.org/10.3390/s130709464

Photo-Detectors Integrated with Resonant Tunneling Diodes

1
Centro de Electrónica, Optoelectrónica e Telecomunicações (CEOT), Departamento de Física, Universidade do Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
2
INESC TEC, Faculdade de Engenharia, Universidade do Porto, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal
3
School of Engineering, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8LT, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 June 2013 / Revised: 9 July 2013 / Accepted: 16 July 2013 / Published: 22 July 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photodetectors)
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Abstract

We report on photo-detectors consisting of an optical waveguide that incorporates a resonant tunneling diode (RTD). Operating at wavelengths around 1.55 μm in the optical communications C band we achieve maximum sensitivities of around 0.29 A/W which is dependent on the bias voltage. This is due to the nature of RTD nonlinear current-voltage characteristic that has a negative differential resistance (NDR) region. The resonant tunneling diode photo-detector (RTD-PD) can be operated in either non-oscillating or oscillating regimes depending on the bias voltage quiescent point. The oscillating regime is apparent when the RTD-PD is biased in the NDR region giving rise to electrical gain and microwave self-sustained oscillations Taking advantage of the RTD’s NDR distinctive characteristics, we demonstrate efficient detection of gigahertz (GHz) modulated optical carriers and optical control of a RTD GHz oscillator. RTD-PD based devices can have applications in generation and optical control of GHz low-phase noise oscillators, clock recovery systems, and fiber optic enabled radio frequency communication systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: double barrier quantum well structures; clock recovery; microwave-photonics; optical injection locking; optoelectronic circuits; oscillators; photo-detectors; radio-over-fiber; resonant tunneling diodes double barrier quantum well structures; clock recovery; microwave-photonics; optical injection locking; optoelectronic circuits; oscillators; photo-detectors; radio-over-fiber; resonant tunneling diodes
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Romeira, B.; Pessoa, L.M.; Salgado, H.M.; Ironside, C.N.; Figueiredo, J.M.L. Photo-Detectors Integrated with Resonant Tunneling Diodes. Sensors 2013, 13, 9464-9482.

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