24 June 2014 MTF study of planar small pixel pitch quantum IR detectors
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The actual trend in quantum IR detector development is the design of very small pixel pitch large arrays. From previously 30μm pitch, the standard pixel pitch is today 15μm and is expected to decrease to 12μm in the next few years. Furthermore, focal plane arrays (FPA) with pixel pitch as small as small as 10μm has been demonstrated. Such ultra-small pixel pitches are very small compared to the typical length ruling the electrical characteristics of the absorbing materials, namely the minority carrier diffusion length. As an example for low doped N type HgCdTe or InSb material, this diffusion length is of the order of 30 to 50μm, i.e. 3 to 5 times the targeted pixel pitches. This has strong consequences on the modulation transfer function (MTF) for planar structures, where the lateral extension of the photodiode is limited by diffusion. For such aspect ratios, the self-confinement of neighboring diodes may not be efficient enough to maintain optimal MTF. Therefore, this issue has to be addressed in order to take full benefits of the pixel pitch reduction in terms of image resolution. This paper aims at investigating the MTF evolution of HgCdTe and InSb FPAs decreasing the pixel pitch below 15μm. Both experimental measurements and finite element simulations are used to discuss this issue. Different scenarii will be compared, namely deep mesa etch between pixels, internal drift, surface recombination, thin absorbing layers.
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O. Gravrand, O. Gravrand, N. Baier, N. Baier, A. Ferron, A. Ferron, F. Rochette, F. Rochette, J. Berthoz, J. Berthoz, L. Rubaldo, L. Rubaldo, R. Cluzel, R. Cluzel, } "MTF study of planar small pixel pitch quantum IR detectors", Proc. SPIE 9070, Infrared Technology and Applications XL, 907036 (24 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2053874; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2053874

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