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Dual-gated bilayer graphene hot-electron bolometer

Abstract

Graphene is an attractive material for use in optical detectors because it absorbs light from mid-infrared to ultraviolet wavelengths with nearly equal strength. Graphene is particularly well suited for bolometers—devices that detect temperature-induced changes in electrical conductivity caused by the absorption of light—because its small electron heat capacity and weak electron–phonon coupling lead to large light-induced changes in electron temperature. Here, we demonstrate a hot-electron bolometer made of bilayer graphene that is dual-gated to create a tunable bandgap and electron-temperature-dependent conductivity. The bolometer exhibits a noise-equivalent power (33 fW Hz–1/2 at 5 K) that is several times lower, and intrinsic speed (>1 GHz at 10 K) three to five orders of magnitude higher than commercial silicon bolometers and superconducting transition-edge sensors at similar temperatures.

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Figure 1: Bilayer graphene device and typical optoelectronic response.
Figure 2: Dependencies of R and ΔV on Vtg and Vbg.
Figure 3: Comparison of photoresponse and electrical heating of DGBLG at charge neutrality with D̄ = −0.65 V nm−1.
Figure 4: Electrical heating of DGBLG at charge neutrality with D̄ = 0.55 V nm−1.
Figure 5: Response speed of DGBLG HEB.

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Acknowledgements

The authors thank J. Melngailis, D. E. Prober, H. Moseley and A. F. Heinz for discussions. This work was supported by IARPA, the ONR MURI programme and the NSF (grants DMR-0804976 and DMR-1105224) and in part by the NSF MRSEC (grant DMR-0520471). J.A.E. and H.M.M. acknowledge the support of the NSF.

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Contributions

M.S.F. and H.D.D. conceived the project. J.Y. fabricated the devices and performed the transport measurements. M.H.K., J.Y., A.B.S. and G.S.J. conducted the photoresponse experiments. J.A.E. and H.M.M. assisted in the pump–probe measurements. J.Y., M.H.K., M.S.F. and H.D.D. analysed data and wrote the manuscript. All authors discussed and contributed to writing the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to M. S. Fuhrer.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Yan, J., Kim, MH., Elle, J. et al. Dual-gated bilayer graphene hot-electron bolometer. Nature Nanotech 7, 472–478 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2012.88

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