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Black Phosphorus Carbide Infrared Phototransistor for high speed and low light applications

Technology Overview

Photodetectors are a key component of many devices we use in our daily life. From metrology and imaging to optical communications, we rely on photodetectors to convert the information stored in light into electrical signals that can be processed by standard electronics. Due to its wide applications as a sensor in current technologies, it is therefore of great interest to find novel functional materials not only with high sensitivity but also with wide absorption spectrum for more efficient detection at all wavelengths. Current commercial photodetectors based on three-dimensional (3D) material such as Silicon (Si) and Indium Gallium Arsenide (InGaAs), are opaque and brittle in bulk form, and thus are not a suitable sensor’s material for use in flexible optoelectronics in the coming age of the internet of things. Although photodetectors based on 2D materials are more flexible than the bulk semiconductor, as of now, they do not show satisfactory performance in terms of gain and response time. NUS researchers have developed a high-performance composite few-layer black-phosphorus carbide (b-PC) phototransistor fabricated via a novel carbon doping technique, which achieved a high responsivity (R) of 2163 A/W, a short response time of 5.6 ps, a low shot noise equivalent power (NEPshot) of 1.3 fW/Hz1/2, and an intrinsic absorption  spectrum with non-zero absorption at 8000 nm all under ambient and room temperature conditions. The maximum responsivity of 2163 A/W and minimum response speed of 5.6 ps of the b-PC enables it to be used for high speed and low light applications.

Technology Features & Specifications

The technology is a high-performance composite few-layer black-phosphorus carbide (b-PC) phototransistor fabricated via a novel carbon doping technique, which achieved a high responsivity (R) of 2163 A/W, a short response time of 5.6 ps, a low shot noise equivalent power (NEPshot) of 1.3 fW/Hz1/2, and an intrinsic absorption  spectrum with non-zero absorption at 8000 nm all under ambient and room temperature conditions. The maximum responsivity of 2163 A/W and minimum response speed of 5.6 ps of the b-PC demonstrated here is one of the highest in the literature, enabling it to be used for high speed and low light applications. The photodetector is also flexible as it is fabricated using 2-dimensional b-PC

Potential Applications

  • Possible applications for phototransistors are in:

    (1) Detection in Security Systems, (2) Measuring Speed and Direction In Encoders, (3) Remote Meter Reading for Residential Electric Meters, (4) Counting Coins or Other Items and (5) Shutter Control for Cameras.

  • Metrology
  • Imaging
  • Optical communications
  • Flexible electronics 
  • Target industry is the phototransistor manufacturers. 

Market Trends and Opportunities

According to a new market research report by Global Market Insight, the optoelectronics market size was more than USD 30 billion in 2015, which is set to exceed USD 55 billion by 2023.

The developed technology is suitable as sensors for flexible electronics in the coming Internet of Things. Its' high maximum responsivity of 2163 A/W and short minimum response speed of 5.6 ps makes it suitable for high speed and low light applications. In addition, it has a wide absorption spectrum ranging from visible light to infra-red regime.

Customer Benefits

  • Fast response (5.6 ps) and high responsivity (2163A/W) for high speed and low light applications
  • Low shot noise equivalent power (NEPshot) of 1.3 fW/Hz1/2 for high sensitivity applications
  • Wide absorption spectrum ranging from visible light to infra-red regime 

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