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Homework 5 Solution

Chapter 5

5.1 Bandgap and photodetection

a. Determine the maximum value of the energy gap that a semiconductor, used as a photoconductor,

can have if it is to be sensitive to yellow light (600 nm).

b. A photodetector whose area is 5 10-2 cm2 is irradiated with yellow light whose intensity is 2 mW

cm-2. Assuming that each photon generates one electron-hole pair, calculate the number of pairs

generated per second.

c. From the known energy gap of the semiconductor GaAs (Eg = 1.42 eV), calculate the primary

wavelength of photons emitted from this crystal as a result of electron-hole recombination.

d. Is the above wavelength visible?

e. Will a silicon photodetector be sensitive to the radiation from a GaAs laser? Why?

Solution

a

We are given the wavelength = 600 nm, therefore we need Eph = h = Eg so that,

Eg = hc/ = (6.626 10-34 J s)(3.0 108 m s-1) / (600 10-9 m)

Area A = 5 10-2 cm2 and light intensity Ilight = 2 10-3 W/cm2. The received power is:

P = AIlight = (5 10-2 cm2)(2 10-3 W/cm2) = 1.0 10-4 W

Nph = number of photons arriving per second = P/Eph

Since the each photon contributes one electron-hole pair (EHP), the number of EHPs is then:

NEHP = 3.02 1014 EHP s-1

= hc/Eg = (6.626 10-34 J s)(3.0 108 m s-1) / (1.42 eV 1.602 10-19 J/eV)

The wavelength of emitted radiation due to electron-hole pair (EHP) recombination is therefore

874 nm.

d

e

is,

From Table 5.1 (in the textbook), for Si, Eg = 1.10 eV and the corresponding cut-off wavelength

g = hc/Eg = (6.626 10-34 J s)(3.0 108 m s-1) / (1.1 eV 1.602 10-19 J/eV)

5.1

Homework 5 Solution

Since the 874 nm wavelength of the GaAs laser is shorter than the cut-off wavelength of 1130

nm, the Si photodetector can detect the 874 nm radiation (Put differently, the photon energy

corresponding to 874 nm, 1.42 eV, is larger than the Eg, 1.10 eV, of Si which means that the Si

photodetector can indeed detect the 874 nm radiation).

a. Consider the conductivity of a semiconductor, = ene + eph. Will doping always increase the

conductivity?

b. Show that the minimum conductivity for Si is obtained when it is p-type doped such that the hole

concentration is

pm = ni

e

h

min = 2eni e h

c. Calculate pm and min for Si and compare with intrinsic values.

Solution

a

Doping does not always increase the conductivity. Suppose that we have an intrinsic sample

with n = p but the hole drift mobility is smaller. If we dope the material very slightly with p-type then p

> n. However, this would decrease the conductivity because it would create more holes with lower

mobility at the expense of electrons with higher mobility. Obviously with further doping p increases

sufficiently to result in the conductivity increasing with the extent of doping.

b

To find the minimum conductivity, first consider the mass action law:

np = ni2

isolate n:

n = ni2/p

= ene + eph

eni2 e

=

+ h ep

p

To find the value of p that gives minimum conductivity (pm), differentiate the above equation

with respect to p and set it equal to zero:

d

eni2 e

=

+ h e

2

dp

p

eni 2 e

+ h e = 0

pm 2

5.2

Homework 5 Solution

pm = ni

e

h

Substituting this expression back into the equation for conductivity will give the minimum

conductivity:

min

e

eni2 e

eni 2 e

=

+ hep m =

+ h eni

pm

ni e h

h

h

+ eni e h = eni e h + eni e h

e

min = eni e

min = 2eni e h

c

From Table 5.1, for Si: e = 1350 cm2 V-1 s-1, h = 450 cm2 V-1 s-1 and ni = 1.45 1010 cm-3.

Substituting into the equations for pm and min:

pm = ni

e

1350 cm 2 V1 s1

10

3

10

= (1.45 10 cm )

cm-3

2

1

1 = 2.51 10

h

450 cm V s

min = 2eni e h

min = 2(1.602 1019 C)(1.45 1010 cm3 ) (1350 cm2 V1 s1 )(450 cm2 V1 s1 )

The corresponding maximum resistivity is:

The intrinsic value corresponding to pm is simply ni (= 1.45 1010 cm-3). Comparing it to pm:

pm 2.51 1010 cm 3

=

= 1.73

ni 1.45 1010 cm3

int = eni(e + h)

int = (1.602 10-19 C)(1.45 1010 cm-3)(1350 cm2 V-1 s-1 + 450 cm2 V-1 s-1)

Comparing this value to the minimum conductivity:

=

= 0.866

min 4.18 10 6 W -1 cm-1

Sufficient p-type doping that increases the hole concentration by 73% decreases the conductivity

by 15% to its minimum value.

a. A Si wafer has been doped n-type with 1017 As atoms cm-3.

5.3

Homework 5 Solution

2. Where is the Fermi level in this sample at 27 C with respect to the Fermi level (EFi) in intrinsic

Si?

3. Calculate the conductivity of the sample at 127 C.

b. The above n-type Si sample is further doped with 9 1016 boron atoms (p-type dopant) per

centimeter cubed.

2. Where is the Fermi level in this sample with respect to the Fermi level in the sample in (a) at 27

C? Is this an n-type or p-type Si?

Solution

Given temperature T = 27 C = 300 K, concentration of donors Nd = 1017 cm-3, and drift mobility

e 800 cm2 V-1 s-1 (from Figure 5Q3-1). At room temperature the electron concentration n = Nd >> p

(hole concentration).

a

2000

1000

Holes

Electrons

100

50

1015

1016

1017

1018

Dopant Concentration,

1019

1020

cm-3

Figure 5Q3-1 The variation of the drift mobility with dopant concentration in Si

(1)

= eNde (1.602 10-19 C)(1017 cm-3)(800 cm2 V-1 s-1) = 12.8 -1 cm-1

(2)

ni = Ncexp[(Ec EFi)/kT]

(1)

n = Nd = Ncexp[(Ec EFn)/kT]

(2)

Nd

E EFi

= exp Fn

ni

kT

(3)

N E EFi

ln d = Fn

kT

ni

5.4

Homework 5 Solution

(4)

Substituting we find (ni = 1.45 1010 cm-3 from Table 5.1 in the textbook),

EF = (8.617 10-5 eV/K)(300 K)ln[(1017 cm-3)/ (1.45 1010 cm-3)]

50000

LT1.5

Ge

Nd =1014

10000

Nd =1016

Nd =1013

Nd =1017

1000

Nd =1018

100

Nd =1019

Si

T1.5

10

70

100

Temperature (K)

800

Figure 5Q3-2 Log-log plot for drift mobility versus temperature for n-type Ge

and n-type Si samples. Various donor concentrations for Si are shown, Nd are in

cm-3. The upper right insert is the simple theory for lattice limited mobility

whereas the lower left inset is the simple theory for impurity scattering limited

mobility.

(3)

At Ti = 127 C = 400 K, e 450 cm2 V-1 s-1 (from Figure 5Q3-2). The semiconductor is still ntype (check that Nd >> ni at 400 K), then

= eNde (1.602 10-19 C)(1017 cm-3)(450 cm2 V-1 s-1) = 7.21 -1 cm-1

b

The sample is further doped with Na = 9 1016 cm-3 = 0.9 1017 cm-3 acceptors. Due to

compensation, the net effect is still an n-type semiconductor but with an electron concentration given

by,

We note that the electron scattering now occurs from Na + Nd (1.9 1017 cm-3) number of

ionized centers so that e 700 cm2 V-1 s-1 (Figure 5Q3-1).

(1)

(2)

= eNde (1.602 10-19 C)(1016 cm-3)(700 cm2 V-1 s-1) = 1.12 -1 cm-1

Using Eqn. (3) with n = Nd Na we have

Nd N a

E E Fi

= exp Fn

kT

ni

so that

The Fermi level from (a) and (b) has shifted down by an amount 0.059 eV. Since the

energy is still above the Fermi level, this an n-type Si.

5.5

Homework 5 Solution

An n-type Si sample has been doped with 1015 phosphorus atoms cm-3. The donor energy level for P

in Si is 0.045 eV below the conduction band edge energy.

a. Calculate the room temperature conductivity of the sample.

b. Estimate the temperature above which the sample behaves as if intrinsic.

c. Estimate to within 20% the lowest temperature above which all the donors are ionized.

d. Sketch schematically the dependence of the electron concentration in the conduction band on the

temperature as log(n) versus 1/T, and mark the various important regions and critical temperatures.

For each region draw an energy band diagram that clearly shows from where the electrons are

excited into the conduction band.

e. Sketch schematically the dependence of the conductivity on the temperature as log() versus 1/T

and mark the various critical temperatures and other relevant information.

Solution

600C 400C 200C

27C 0C

1018

2.41013 cm-3

1015

Ge

1012

1.451010 cm-3

109

Si

106

2.1106 cm-3

GaAs

103

1.5

2.5

3

1000/T (1/K)

3.5

a

The conductivity at room temperature T = 300 K is (e = 1350 10-4 m2 V-1 s-1 can be found in

Table 5.1 in the textbook):

= eNde

= (1.602 10-19 C)(1 1021 m-3)(1350 10-4 m2 V-1 s-1) = 21.6 -1 m-1

b

At T = Ti, the intrinsic concentration ni = Nd = 1 1015 cm-3. From Figure 5Q4-1, the graph of

ni(T) vs. 1/T, we have:

5.6

Homework 5 Solution

c

The ionization region ends at T = Ts when all donors have been ionized, i.e. when n = Nd. From

Example 5.7, at T = Ts:

1

E

2

1

n = Nd = Nc Nd exp

2

2 kTs

Ts =

Ts =

2k ln

1

2

Nd

N c Nd

E

2N

d

2k ln

Nc

E

N

k ln c

2Nd

Take Nc = 2.8 1019 cm-3 at 300 K from Table 5.1 (in the textbook), and the difference between

the donor energy level and the conduction band energy is E = 0.045 eV. Therefore our first

approximation to Ts is:

Ts =

E

=

= 54.68 K

19

3

N c

2.8

10

cm

(

)

k ln

1.381 10 23 J/K)ln

15

3

2Nd (

2(10 cm )

3

T 2

54.68 K 2

= 2.179 1018 cm-3

Nc = Nc s = (2.8 1019 cm3 )

300 K

300

Find a better approximation for Ts by using this new Nc:

Ts =

E

=

= 74.64 K

18

3

N c

2.179

10

cm

(

)

k ln

1.381 10 23 J/K)ln

2Nd (

2(1015 cm 3 )

T 2

74.64 K 2

Nc = Nc s = (2.8 1019 cm3 )

= 3.475 1018 cm-3

300 K

300

Ts=

E

=

= 69.97 K

18

3

N c

3.475

10

cm

(

)

k ln

1.381 10 23 J/K)ln

2Nd (

2(1015 cm3 )

T 2

69.97 K 2

Nc= Nc s = (2.8 1019 cm3 )

= 3.154 1018 cm-3

300 K

300

5.7

Homework 5 Solution

Ts=

E

=

= 70.89 K

18

3

N c

3.154

10

cm

(

)

k ln

1.381 10 23 J/K)ln

2Nd (

2(1015 cm 3 )

We can see that the change in Ts is very small, and for all practical purposes we can consider the

calculation as converged. Therefore Ts = 70.9 K = 202.1 C.

d and e See Figures 5Q4-2 and 5Q4-3.

ln(n)

Intrinsic

slope = E g /2k

Extrinsic

ln(N d )

Ts

Ionization

slope = E/2k

Ti

ni(T)

1/T

Figure 5Q4-2 The temperature dependence of the electron concentration in an n-type semiconductor.

log(n )

log( )

Semiconductor

INTRINSIC

Metal

T

EXTRINSIC

Lattice

scattering

log( )

IONIZATION

3/2

T 3/2

Impurity

scattering

High Temperature

1/T

Low Temperature

5.5 GaAs

Ga has a valency of III and As has V. When Ga and As atoms are brought together to form the GaAs

crystal, as depicted in Figure 5Q5-1, the 3 valence electrons in each Ga and the 5 valence electrons in

each As are all shared to form four covalent bonds per atom. In the GaAs crystal with some 1023 or so

equal numbers of Ga and As atoms, we have an average of four valence electrons per atom, whether

Ga or As, so we would expect the bonding to be similar to that in the Si crystal: four bonds per atom.

The crystal structure, however, is not that of diamond but rather that of zinc blende (Chapter 1 of the

textbook).

5.8

Homework 5 Solution

a. What is the average number of valence electrons per atom for a pair of Ga and As atoms and in the

GaAs crystal?

b. What will happen if Se or Te, from Group VI, are substituted for an As atom in the GaAs crystal?

c. What will happen if Zn or Cd, from Group II, are substituted for a Ga atom in the GaAs crystal?

d. What will happen if Si, from Group IV, is substituted for an As atom in the GaAs crystal?

e. What will happen if Si, from Group IV, is substituted for a Ga atom in the GaAs crystal? What do

you think amphoteric dopant means?

f. Based on the above discussion ,what do you think the crystal structures of the III-V compound

semiconductors AlAs, GaP, InAs, InP, and InSb will be?

Ga

As

As atom (Valency V)

Ga

As

Ga

As

As

Ga

As

Ga

Ga

As

Ga

As

As

Ga

As

Ga

Figure 5Q5-1 The GaAs crystal structure in two dimensions. Average number

of valence electrons per atom is four. Each Ga atom covalently bonds with

four neighboring As atoms and vice versa.

Solution

As

As atom (Valency V)

hyb orbitals

Valence

electron

Ga

Ga atom (Valency III)

hyb orbitals

Valence

electron

Ga

As

Ga

As

As

Ga

As

Ga

Ga

As

Ga

As

As

Ga

As

Ga

Explanation of bonding in GaAs: The one s and three p orbitals hybridize to form 4 hyb

orbitals. In As there are 5 valence electrons. One hyb has two paired electrons and 3 hyb have 1

electron each as shown. In Ga there are 3 electrons so one hyb is empty. This empty hyb of Ga can

overlap the full hyb of As. The overlapped orbital, the bonding orbital, then has two paired electrons.

This is a bond between Ga and As even though the electrons come from As (this type of bonding is

called dative bonding). It is a bond because the electrons in the overlapped orbital are shared by both

As and Ga. The other 3 hyb of As can overlap 3 hyb of neighboring Ga to form "normal bonds".

5.9

Homework 5 Solution

Repeating this in three dimensions generates the GaAs crystal where each atom bonds to four

neighboring atoms as shown. Because all the bonding orbitals are full, the valence band formed from

these orbitals is also full. The crystal structure is reminiscent of that of Si. GaAs is a semiconductor.

a

b

Se or Te replacing As will have one additional electron that cannot be involved in any of the

four bonds. Hence Se and Te will act as a donor.

c

Zn or Cd replacing Ga will have one less electron than the substituted Ga atom. This creates a

hole in a bond. Zn and Cd will act as acceptors.

d

The Si atom has 1 less electron than the As atom and when it substitutes for an As atom in GaAs

there is a "hole" in one of the four bonds. This creates a hole, or the Si atom acts as an acceptor.

e

The Si atom has 1 more electron than the Ga atom and when it substitutes for a Ga atom in GaAs

there is an additional electron that cannot enter any of the four bonds and is therefore donated into the

CB (given sufficiently large temperature). Si substituting for Ga therefore acts as a donor.

f

All these compounds (AlAs, GaP, InAs, InP, InSb) are compounds of III elements and V

elements so they will follow the example of GaAs.

5.10

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