InP-Based Geiger-Mode Avalanche Photodiode Arrays for Three-Dimensional Imaging at 1.06 μm


Mark A. Itzler, Mark Entwistle, Mark Owens, Xudong Jiang, Ketan M. Patel, Krystyna Slomkowski, Tim Koch, Sabbir Rangwala, Peter F. Zalud, Young Yu, John Tower, and Joseph Ferraro “InP-based Geiger-mode avalanche photodiode arrays for three-dimensional imaging at 1.06 μm”, Proc. SPIE 7320, Advanced Photon Counting Techniques III, 73200O (29 April 2009);


We report on the development of 32 x 32 focal plane arrays (FPAs) based on InGaAsP/InP Geiger-mode avalanche photodiodes (GmAPDs) designed for use in three-dimensional (3-D) laser radar imaging systems at 1064 nm. To our knowledge, this is the first realization of FPAs for 3-D imaging that employ a planar-passivated buried-junction InP-based GmAPD device platform. This development also included the design and fabrication of custom readout integrate circuits (ROICs) to perform avalanche detection and time-of-flight measurements on a per-pixel basis. We demonstrate photodiode arrays (PDAs) with a very narrow breakdown voltage distribution width of 0.34 V, corresponding to a breakdown voltage total variation of less than +/- 0.2%. At an excess bias voltage of 3.3 V, which provides 40% pixel-level single photon detection efficiency, we achieve average dark count rates of 2 kHz at an operating temperature of 248 K. We present the characterization of optical crosstalk induced by hot carrier luminescence during avalanche events, where we show that the worst-case crosstalk probability per pixel, which occurs for nearest neighbors, has a value of less than 1.6% and exhibits anisotropy due to isolation trench etch geometry. To demonstrate the FPA response to optical density variations, we show a simple image of a broadened optical beam.

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