Performance trade-offs in single-photon avalanche diode miniaturization

Hod Finkelstein, Mark J. Hsu, Sanja Zlatanovic, Sadik Esener

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Single-photon avalanche diodes (SPADs) provide photons' time of arrival for various applications. In recent years, attempts have been made to miniaturize SPADs in order to facilitate large-array integration and in order to reduce the dead time of the device. We investigate the benefits and drawbacks of device miniaturization by characterizing a new fast SPAD in a commercial 0.18 μm complementary metal oxide semiconductor technology. The device employs a novel and efficient guard ring, resulting in a high fill factor. Thanks to its small size, the dead time is only 5 ns, resulting in the fastest reported SPAD to date. However, the short dead time is accompanied by a high after-pulsing rate, which we show to be a limiting parameter for SPAD miniaturization. We describe a new and compact active-recharge scheme which improves signal-to-noise tenfold compared with the passive configuration, using a fraction of the area of state-of-the-art active-recharge circuits, and without increasing the dead time. The performance of compact SPADs stands to benefit such applications as high-resolution fluorescence-lifetime imaging, active-illumination three-dimensional imagers, and quantum, key distribution systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103103
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Volume78
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Avalanche diodes
avalanche diodes
miniaturization
Photons
photons
Quantum cryptography
Image sensors
arrivals
CMOS
Lighting
Fluorescence
illumination
Imaging techniques
life (durability)
fluorescence
Networks (circuits)
rings
high resolution
configurations
Metals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • Instrumentation

Cite this

Performance trade-offs in single-photon avalanche diode miniaturization. / Finkelstein, Hod; Hsu, Mark J.; Zlatanovic, Sanja; Esener, Sadik.

In: Review of Scientific Instruments, Vol. 78, No. 10, 103103, 2007.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Finkelstein, Hod ; Hsu, Mark J. ; Zlatanovic, Sanja ; Esener, Sadik. / Performance trade-offs in single-photon avalanche diode miniaturization. In: Review of Scientific Instruments. 2007 ; Vol. 78, No. 10.
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