(Hg,Cd)Te material and photodiode fabrication processes have been developed to provide high performance detectors for a wide range of system applications. Major emphasis has been placed on detectors for 10.6-micrometer laser detection, although detectors have been designed and fabricated to cover the infrared spectrum between 1.5 and 14 micrometers. Since the principal laser source being considered for optical communications is the CO2 laser at 10.6 micrometers, factors affecting detector performance for this wavelength are the subject of this paper. This paper discusses basic material considerations, doping concentrations and carrier transport which affect photodiode performance. Additionally, tradeoffs in photodiode design for specific applications are presented together with predicted performance based upon expected refinement in material and process technology.