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10 October 2003 Epitaxial InSb for elevated temperature operation of large IR focal plane arrays
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The use of epitaxially grown indium antimonide (InSb) has previously been demonstrated for the production of large 2D focal plane arrays. It confers several advantages over conventional, bulk InSb photo-voltaic detectors, such as reduced cross-talk, however here we focus on the improvement in operating temperature that can be achieved because more complex structures can be grown. Diode resistance, imaging, NETD and operability results are presented for a progression of structures that reduce the diode leakage current as the temperature is raised above 80K, compared with a basic p+-n-n+ structure presented previously. These include addition of a thin region of InAlSb to reduce p-contact leakage current, and construction of the whole device from InAlSb to reduce thermal generation in the active region of the detector. An increase in temperature to 110K, whilst maintaining full 80K performance, is achieved, and imaging up to 130K is demonstrated. This gives the prospect of significant benefits for the cooling systems, including, for example, use of argon in Joule-Thomson coolers or an increase in the life and/or decrease in the cost; power consumption and cool-down time of Stirling engines by several tens of per cent.
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Tim Ashley, Theresa M. Burke, Martin T. Emeny, Neil T. Gordon, David J. Hall, David J. Lees, J. Chris Little, and Daniel Milner "Epitaxial InSb for elevated temperature operation of large IR focal plane arrays", Proc. SPIE 5074, Infrared Technology and Applications XXIX, (10 October 2003);

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