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Ultrafast semiconductors developed by researchers




Ultrafast semiconductors developed by researchers

UK researchers have recently developed world-leading compound semiconductors technology. This new technology has the ability to drive high-speed data communications.

A team from Cardiff University’s Institute for compound semiconductors worked in collaboration in order to invent a highly sensitive and ultrafast avalanche photodiode that can create less electronic noise in comparison to its silicon rivals.

APDs happens to be a highly sensitive semiconductor device that can exploit the photoelectric effect when light hits a material. It converts light into electricity.

There is a high demand for supersensitive APDs all around the world. It is required for use in high-speed data communications and detection of light and ranging systems for autonomous vehicles.

Nature Photonics today have published a paper outlining the breakthrough in creating excess low noise and high sensitivity APDs.

Cardiff researchers were led by Ser Cymru Professor Diana Huffakar, Scientific director of ICS and Ser Cymru Chair in advanced engineering and materials in partnership with the University of Sheffield and the California NanoSystems Institute, University of California, Los Angeles to develop the technology.

As stated by Professor Huffakar:

“Our work to develop extremely low excess noise and high sensitivity avalanche photodiodes have the potential to yield a new class of high-performance receivers for applications in networking and sensing.”

He also added:

“The innovation lies in the advanced materials development using molecular beam epitaxy to grow the compound semiconductor crystal in an atom-by-atom regime. This particular material is rather complex and challenging to synthesize as it combines four different atoms requiring a new MBE methodology. The Ser Cymru MBE facility is designed specifically to realize an entire family of challenging materials targeting future sensing solutions.”

Dr, Shiyu Xie, Ser Cymru Cofund Fellow stated:

“The results we are reporting are significant as they operate in a very low-signal environment, at room temperature, very important are compatible with the current InP optoelectronic platform used by most commercial communication vendors.”

He also added:

“These APDs have a wide range of applications. In LIDAR or 3-D Laser mapping, they are used to produce high-resolution maps, with application in geomorphology, seismology and in the control and navigation of some autonomous

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