Germanium quantum dot infrared photodetectors addressed by self-aligned silicon nanowire electrodes.

Author(s) Zhao, Y.; Li, L.; Liu, S.; Wang, J.; Xu, J.; Shi, Y.; Chen, K.; Cabarrocas, P.Roca I.; Yu, L.
Journal Nanotechnology
Date Published 2020 Apr 03

Germanium quantum dots (GeQDs), addressed by self-aligned and epitaxial silicon nanowires (SiNWs) as electrodes, represent the most fundamental and the smallest units that can be integrated into Si optoelectronics for 1550 nm wavelength detection. In this work, individual GeQD photodetectors have been fabricated based on a low temperature self-condensation of uniform amorphous Si (a-Si)/a-Ge bilayers at 300 °C, led by rolling indium (In) droplets. Remarkably, the diameter of the GeQD nodes can be independently controlled to achieve wider GeQDs for maximizing infrared absorption with narrower SiNW electrodes to ensure a high quality Ge/Si hetero-epitaxial connection. Importantly, these hetero GeQD/SiNW photodetectors can be deployed into predesigned locations for scalable device fabrication. The photodetectors demonstrate a responsivity of 1.5 mA W and a photoconductive gain exceeding 10 to the communication wavelength signals, which are related to the beneficial type-II Ge/Si alignment, gradient Ge/Si epitaxial transition and a larger QD/NW diameter ratio. These results indicate a new approach to batch-fabricate and integrate GeQDs for ultra-compact Si-compatible photodetection and imaging applications.

DOI 10.1088/1361-6528/ab647e
ISSN 1361-6528
Citation Nanotechnology. 2020;31(14):145602.