Article | Published:

Waveguide-integrated black phosphorus photodetector with high responsivity and low dark current

Nature Photonics volume 9, pages 247252 (2015) | Download Citation

Abstract

Layered two-dimensional materials have demonstrated novel optoelectronic properties and are well suited for integration in planar photonic circuits. Graphene, for example, has been utilized for wideband photodetection. However, because graphene lacks a bandgap, graphene photodetectors suffer from very high dark current. In contrast, layered black phosphorous, the latest addition to the family of two-dimensional materials, is ideal for photodetector applications due to its narrow but finite bandgap. Here, we demonstrate a gated multilayer black phosphorus photodetector integrated on a silicon photonic waveguide operating in the near-infrared telecom band. In a significant advantage over graphene devices, black phosphorus photodetectors can operate under bias with very low dark current and attain an intrinsic responsivity up to 135 mA W−1 and 657 mA W−1 in 11.5-nm- and 100-nm-thick devices, respectively, at room temperature. The photocurrent is dominated by the photovoltaic effect with a high response bandwidth exceeding 3 GHz.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

from$8.99

All prices are NET prices.

References

  1. 1.

    , , , & Two-dimensional material nanophotonics. Nature Photon. 8, 899–907 (2014).

  2. 2.

    Graphene: electronic and photonic properties and devices. Nano Lett. 10, 4285–4294 (2010).

  3. 3.

    , , & Graphene photonics and optoelectronics. Nature Photon. 4, 611–622 (2010).

  4. 4.

    , , , & Ultrafast graphene photodetector. Nature Nanotech. 4, 839–843 (2009).

  5. 5.

    , & Graphene photodetectors for high-speed optical communications. Nature Photon. 4, 297–301 (2010).

  6. 6.

    et al. CMOS-compatible graphene photodetector covering all optical communication bands. Nature Photon. 7, 892–896 (2013).

  7. 7.

    et al. Chip-integrated ultrafast graphene photodetector with high responsivity. Nature Photon. 7, 883–887 (2013).

  8. 8.

    , , & Photoconductivity of biased graphene. Nature Photon. 7, 53–59 (2013).

  9. 9.

    , , , & Electronics and optoelectronics of two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides. Nature Nanotech. 7, 699–712 (2012).

  10. 10.

    , , , & Atomically thin MoS2: a new direct-gap semiconductor. Phys. Rev. Lett. 105, 136805 (2010).

  11. 11.

    , & The indirect to direct band gap transition in multilayered MoS2 as predicted by screened hybrid density functional theory. Appl. Phys. Lett. 99, 261908 (2011).

  12. 12.

    , , , & Ultrasensitive photodetectors based on monolayer MoS2. Nature Nanotech. 8, 497–501 (2013).

  13. 13.

    et al. Black phosphorus field-effect transistors. Nature Nanotech. 9, 372–377 (2014).

  14. 14.

    et al. Phosphorene: an unexplored 2D semiconductor with a high hole mobility. ACS Nano 8, 4033–4041 (2014).

  15. 15.

    , & Rediscovering black phosphorus as an anisotropic layered material for optoelectronics and electronics. Nature Commun. 5, 4458 (2014).

  16. 16.

    et al. Tunable transport gap in phosphorene. Nano Lett. 14, 5733–5739 (2014).

  17. 17.

    , & Electronic structure of black phosphorus in tight binding approach. J. Phys. Soc. Jpn 50, 3362–3369 (1981).

  18. 18.

    , , , & Photovoltaic effect in few-layer black phosphorus PN junctions defined by local electrostatic gating. Nature Commun. 5, 4651 (2014).

  19. 19.

    et al. Fast and broadband photoresponse of few-layer black phosphorus field-effect transistors. Nano Lett. 14, 3347–3352 (2014).

  20. 20.

    , & Black phosphorus photodetector for multispectral, high-resolution imaging. Nano Lett. 14, 6414–6417 (2014).

  21. 21.

    , , & Origin of photoresponse in black phosphorus phototransistors. Phys. Rev. B 90, 081408 (2014).

  22. 22.

    et al. Black phosphorus radio-frequency transistors. Nano Lett. 14, 6424–6429 (2014).

  23. 23.

    , , & Optical absorption in graphene integrated on silicon waveguides. Appl. Phys. Lett. 101, 111110 (2012).

  24. 24.

    , , , & Multifunctional graphene optical modulator and photodetector integrated on silicon waveguides. Nano Lett. 14, 2741–2746 (2014).

  25. 25.

    et al. Controlling the spontaneous emission rate of monolayer MoS in a photonic crystal nanocavity. Appl. Phys. Lett. 103, 181119 (2013).

  26. 26.

    et al. Control of two-dimensional excitonic light emission via photonic crystal. 2D Mater. 1, 011001 (2014).

  27. 27.

    et al. Boron nitride substrates for high-quality graphene electronics. Nature Nanotech. 5, 722–726 (2010).

  28. 28.

    , , , & The effect of dielectric capping on few-layer phosphorene transistors: tuning the Schottky barrier heights. IEEE Electron. Dev. Lett. 35, 795–797 (2014).

  29. 29.

    et al. Tunable optical properties of multilayer black phosphorus thin films. Phys. Rev. B 90, 075434 (2014).

  30. 30.

    et al. Polarized photocurrent response in black phosphorus field-effect transistors. Nanoscale 6, 8978–8983 (2014).

  31. 31.

    , , , & Photo-thermoelectric effect at a graphene interface junction. Nano Lett. 10, 562–566 (2010).

  32. 32.

    , & Effective dark current suppression with asymmetric MSM photodetectors in Group IV semiconductors. IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett. 15, 1585–1587 (2003).

  33. 33.

    et al. CMOS-integrated high-speed MSM germanium waveguide photodetector. Opt. Express 18, 4986–4999 (2010).

  34. 34.

    Thermal conductivity of elements with complex lattices: B, P, S. Phys. Rev. 139, A507–A515 (1965).

  35. 35.

    , & Gigahertz photothermal effect in silicon waveguides. Appl. Phys. Lett. 93, 213106 (2008).

  36. 36.

    et al. Highly anisotropic and robust excitons in monolayer black phosphorus. Preprint at (2014).

  37. 37.

    et al. Broadband linear-dichroic photodetector in a black phosphorus vertical p–n junction. Preprint at (2014).

  38. 38.

    et al. Black phosphorus-monolayer MoS2 van der Waals heterojunction P–N diode. ACS Nano 8, 8292–8299 (2014).

  39. 39.

    et al. Strong light–matter interactions in heterostructures of atomically thin films. Science 340, 1311–1314 (2013).

  40. 40.

    & Van der Waals heterostructures. Nature 499, 419–425 (2013).

  41. 41.

    et al. Graphene and boron nitride lateral heterostructures for atomically thin circuitry. Nature 488, 627–632 (2012).

Download references

Acknowledgements

This work is supported by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (award no. FA9550-14-1-0277) and the National Science Foundation (NSF, award no. ECCS-1351002). M.L. thanks X.H. Chen and G.J. Ye of University of Science and Technology of China for providing some of the black phosphorus samples at the initial stage of the project. Parts of this work were carried out in the University of Minnesota Nanofabrication Center, which receives partial support from the NSF through the National Nanotechnolgy Infrastructure Network (NNIN) programme, and the Characterization Facility, which is a member of the NSF-funded Materials Research Facilities Network via the Material Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) programme.

Author information

Affiliations

  1. Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA

    • Nathan Youngblood
    • , Che Chen
    • , Steven J. Koester
    •  & Mo Li

Authors

  1. Search for Nathan Youngblood in:

  2. Search for Che Chen in:

  3. Search for Steven J. Koester in:

  4. Search for Mo Li in:

Contributions

M.L. conceived and supervised the research. N.Y. fabricated the devices, performed the measurements and analysed the data. C.C. assisted the fabrication. N.Y., M.L. and S.J.K. analysed the data. M.L., N.Y. and S.J.K. co-wrote the manuscript.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Mo Li.

Supplementary information

PDF files

  1. 1.

    Supplementary information

    Supplementary information

About this article

Publication history

Received

Accepted

Published

DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/nphoton.2015.23

Further reading

Newsletter Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing