What Are Photodetectors? 


February 22, 2023

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Photodetectors are now widely utilized in industrial electronics, electronic communications, medical and healthcare, and many more applications. Semiconductor photodetectors are called photodiodes since they are the most commonly made using float zone wafers. They are used in optical communication systems due to their fast detection speed, high detection efficiency, and small size. If you want to learn more about photodetectors and their function, here’s all the information you need.  

float zone wafer in electronic components

Facts About Photodetectors  

What Exactly Is a Photodetector?  

The definition of a photodetector is an optoelectronic device that detects incident light or optical power and converts it into an electrical signal. This o/p signal is usually proportionate to the incident optical power. These sensors are critical for various scientific applications such as process control, fiber optic communication systems, safety, environmental monitoring, and defense applications.  

How Does a Photodetector Work?  

A photodetector detects light or electromagnetic radiation, whereas other devices may receive the sent optical signals. Photodetectors that use semiconductors work on the electron-hole pair generation concept when exposed to light.  

When a silicon semiconductor material is irradiated with high or equivalent energy to its bandgap, the absorbed photons induce valence band electrons to migrate into the conduction band, leaving holes in the valence band. The electrons in the conduction band behave as free electrons (holes) that can scatter in the presence of an electric field, either intrinsic or externally imposed.  

How Does Optical Absorption Affect Photodetectors?  

Because of optical absorption, photo-generated electron-hole pairs may recombine and re-emit light unless subjected to an electric field-mediated separation to increase a photocurrent, a fraction of the photo-generated free charge carriers received at the electrodes of the photodetector arrangement. The magnitude of photocurrent at a given wavelength is related to the intensity of incident light.  

photodetectors using the float zone wafer 

Are You Looking for High-Quality Float Zone Wafers?  

Our team can provide you with top-of-the-line float zone wafers and other related materials at Wafer World. If you want to learn more about our products, call us today!  

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