InP-based unipolar heterostructure diode for vertical integration, level shifting, and small signal rectification
A unipolar n-n heterostrucuture diode is developed in the InP material system. The electronic barrier is formed by a saw tooth type of conduction band bending which consists of a quaternary In-0.52(AlyGa1-y)(0.48)As layer with 0 < y < y(max). This barrier is lattice matched for all y to InP and is embedded between two n(+)-InGaAs layers. By varying the maximum Al-content from y(max,1) = 0.7 to y(max,2) = 1 a variable barrier height is formed which enables a diode-type I-V characteristic by epitaxial design with an adjustable current density within 3 orders of magnitude. The high current density of the diode with the lower barrier height (y(max,1) = 0.7) makes it suitable for high frequency applications at low signal levels. RF measurements reveal a speed index of 52 ps/V at V-D = 0.15 V. The device is investigated for RF-to-DC power conversion in UHF RFID transponders with low-amplitude RF signals.
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