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Mid-infrared HgTe colloidal quantum dot photodetectors


Today's infrared imaging devices are based on bulk and quantum-confined epitaxial materials and would benefit greatly from higher operating temperatures and lower cost. Imaging chips based on colloidal quantum dot technology could offer a convenient lower-cost alternative, but, to date, the spectral range of operation of colloidal quantum dots has been limited. In this Letter, we report colloidal HgTe quantum dot photodetectors with a room-temperature photoresponse beyond 5 µm, the longest interband absorption wavelength reported so far for colloidal materials. The photodetectors are fabricated from colloidal solutions, which are then drop-cast as thin films on electrodes. Operation covering the important atmospheric mid-wavelength infrared transparency window between 3 and 5 µm is demonstrated.

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Figure 1: Characterization of HgTe CQDs.
Figure 2: Characterization of HgTe QD thin films.
Figure 3: Fourier transforms of interferograms measured for the two devices under identical conditions with 0.3 V bias.
Figure 4: External quantum efficiency as a function of applied bias.
Figure 5: Noise and detectivity.


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This research was supported by the US National Science Foundation (NSF; grant DMR-070626) and by the Department of Energy (grant DE-FG02-06ER46326). The authors made use of shared facilities supported by the NSF MRSEC Program (DMR-0820054). E.L. acknowledges the Ecole Polytechnique, Palaiseau, France, for a postdoctoral fellowship.

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S.K. made the materials and initiated photoconductivity measurements. E.L. studied the thermal-dependent properties. V.B. built the interferometer. P.G.S. guided the work and contributed, with S.K. and E.L., to writing the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Philippe Guyot-Sionnest.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Keuleyan, S., Lhuillier, E., Brajuskovic, V. et al. Mid-infrared HgTe colloidal quantum dot photodetectors. Nature Photon 5, 489–493 (2011).

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