Near-infrared Ge photonic devices on a Si platform are presented toward low-cost, low-energy and high-capacity optical communications. Using Ge epitaxial layers selectively grown by chemical vapor deposition on Si-on-insulator layers, Ge photodiodes (PDs) of vertical pin structures are integrated with Si optical waveguides. The integrated Ge PDs show high responsivities as large as 0.8 A/W at 1.55 μm with the 3-dB cutoff frequency more than 10 GHz. SiGe/Ge heterostructures have potential applications to higher-performance devices. One application is to low-noise and low-voltage avalanche photodiodes (APDs), where a SiGe layer is inserted at the interface between the optical absorption layer of Ge and the carrier-multiplication layer of Si or Ge. The band discontinuity at the interface enhances the impact ionization for photo-generated carriers injected via SiGe. Fabricated APDs show an enhanced multiplication gain. The other application of SiGe is to a stressor to control the direct bandgap of Ge. As a proof of concept, a tensile-strained Si0.2Ge0.8 overlayer is shown to induce a compressive stress in the underlying Ge mesa stripe, leading to a blue shift in the absorption edge of Ge.
Yasuhiko Ishikawa, "Ge/SiGe for silicon photonics," Proc. SPIE 10131, Next-Generation Optical Networks for Data Centers and Short-Reach Links IV, 101310C (Presented at SPIE OPTO: February 02, 2017; Published: 28 January 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2254211.
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