13 April 2005 Effect of circuital currents on the speed and efficiency of picosecond-range switching in a GaAs avalanche transistor
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Abstract
Ultrafast (picosecond range) switching of a GaAs-based BJT (bipolar junction transistor) in the avalanche mode has recently been demonstrated experimentally. It was found to be caused by the formation and spread of ultra-high amplitude multiple Gunn domains, which cause extremely powerful avalanching in the volume of the switching filaments. Unavoidable parasitic impedance of an external circuit limits the rate of avalanche carrier generation in the channels, however, which slows down the switching and increases the residual voltage across the switch. We present here the results of simulations which show that the switching transient can be significantly accelerated and the residual voltage reduced due to the supporting of a higher current density in the channels by the charge stored in the barrier capacitance of the non-switched part of the structure. The corresponding circuital currents are confined in low-inductance loops inside the structure and are not critically affected by the parameters of the external circuit. This provides very fast and effective reduction in the collector voltage, provided the parameters of the semiconductor layers and the geometry of the device are selected properly. Particularly significant in this process is the effect of circuital current saturation in the lightly doped collector region of the non-switched part of the transistor. The results of the simulations with the barrier capacitance included in the model are in excellent agreement with the experimental data.
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Sergey Vainshtein, Valentin Yuferev, Juha Kostamovaara, "Effect of circuital currents on the speed and efficiency of picosecond-range switching in a GaAs avalanche transistor", Proc. SPIE 5725, Ultrafast Phenomena in Semiconductors and Nanostructure Materials IX, (13 April 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.581504; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.581504
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