Nitride Based Quantum Tunneling Electronics and Optoelectronics, Paul R. Berger

Advisor: Paul R. Berger

Postdoctoral Researchers:
Dr. Tyler Growden

Ms. Parastou Fakhimi (ECE Ph.D. candidate)

Elliott Brown (Wright State University)
Weidong Zhang (Wright State University)
David Storm (Naval Research Laboratory)
David Meyer (Naval Research Laboratory)
Richard Molnar (MIT Lincoln Laboratory)
Jeffrey Daulton (MIT Lincoln Laboratory)
Patrick J. Fay (University of Notre Dame)

Former Graduate Students:
Tyler Growden (PhD 2016)

Importance of the Problem:

Thin vertical devices using III-nitrides have been met with a myriad of materials science challenges, but mastering this family will open new vistas of novel vertical nitride devices using thin heterobarriers.

Brief Description of Our Work and Results:

AlN/GaN resonant tunneling diodes (RTD) grown on low dislocation density semi-insulating (SI) bulk GaN substrates via plasma-assisted molecular-beam epitaxy (MBE) are reported. The devices were fabricated using a six mask level, fully isolated process. Stable room temperature negative differential resistance (NDR) was observed across the entire sample. The NDR exhibited no hysteresis, background light sensitivity, or degradation of any kind after more than 1000 continuous up-and-down voltage sweeps. The sample exhibited a ~90% yield of operational devices which routinely displayed an average peak current density of 2.7 kA/cm2 and peak-to-valley current ratio (PVCR) of ~1.15 across different sizes.

Awards and Citations



Unipolar-Doped, Bipolar-Tunneling Electroluminescence

  1. "Near-UV Electroluminescence in Unipolar-Doped, Bipolar-Tunneling (UDBT) GaN/AlN Heterostructures," Tyler A. Growden, Weidong Zhang, Elliott R. Brown, David F. Storm, David J. Meyer, and Paul R. Berger, Nature's Light: Science and Applications [accepted September 10, 2017; accepted article preview, 27 October 2017]; vol. 7, e17150 (2018) [, First Unipolar-Doped Bipolar Electroluminesence

Intraband Tunneling

  1. "AlN/GaN/AlN resonant tunneling diodes grown by RF-plasma assisted molecular beam epitaxy on freestanding GaN," D.F. Storm, T.A. Growden, D.S. Katzer, M.T. Hardy, W. Zhang, E.R. Brown, P.R. Berger, and D.J. Meyer, Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology B, vol. 35, No. 2 pp. 02B110-1 to 02B110-4, (March/April 2017). PDF (1245 kB)

  2. "Highly repeatable room temperature negative differential resistance in AlN/GaN resonant tunneling diodes grown by molecular beam epitaxy," Tyler A. Growden, David F. Storm, Weidong Zhang, Elliott R. Brown, David J. Meyer, Parastou Fakhimi, and Paul R. Berger, Applied Physics Letters, 109, 083504 (Submitted May 5, 2016, Published August 2016). PDF (1180 kB) [, First Peer-Reviewed Report of Repeatable NDR in Gallium Nitride

Interband Tunneling

  1. "Record High Current Density (776 kA/cm2) InGaN/GaN Resonant Tunneling Diodes using Polarization Induced Barriers Tyler A. Growden, Sriram Krishnamoorthy, Siddharth Rajan, and Paul R. Berger, 10th International Conference on Nitride Semiconductors, Washington, DC (August 25-30, 2013). [, Record Current Density in GaN-based Interband Tunnel Diodes

  2. "Methods for Obtaining High Interband Tunneling Current in III-Nitrides," Tyler A. Growden, Sriram Krishnamoorthy, Digbijoy N. Nath, Anisha Ramesh, Siddharth Rajan, and Paul R. Berger, IEEE DRC Digest, pp. 163-164 (2012). PDF (649 kB)

Fundamental Tunneling Physics

  1. "A Nonlinear Circuit Model for Switching Process in Quantum Well Devices," W-D. Zhang, E.R. Brown, T.A. Growden, P.R. Berger, R. Droopad, IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices, vol. 63, No. 12, Pages: 4993 - 4997, (December 2016). PDF (950 kB)

  2. "Experimental Determination of Quantum-Well Lifetime Effect on Large-Signal Resonant Tunneling Diode Switching Time," Tyler A. Growden, E. R. Brown, Weidong Zhang, Ravi Droopad, and Paul R. Berger, Applied Physics Letters, 107, 153506 (2015); PDF (1162 kB) [, First Measurement of Quantum Well Lifetime Effect on RTDs

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Last updated November 17, 2017.

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