CsPbBr3 perovskite detectors with 1.4% energy resolution for high-energy γ-rays


Halide perovskite semiconductors are poised to revitalize the field of ionizing radiation detection as they have done to solar photovoltaics. We show that all-inorganic perovskite CsPbBr3 devices resolve 137Cs 662-keV γ-rays with 1.4% energy resolution, as well as other X- and γ-rays with energies ranging from tens of keV to over 1 MeV in ambipolar sensing and unipolar hole-only sensing modes with crystal volumes of 6.65 mm3 and 297 mm3, respectively. We report the scale-up of CsPbBr3 ingots to up to 1.5 inches in diameter with an excellent hole mobility–lifetime product of 8 × 10−3 cm2 V−1 and a long hole lifetime of up to 296 μs. CsPbBr3 detectors demonstrate a wide temperature region from ~2 °C to ~70 °C for stable operation. Detectors protected with suitable encapsulants show a uniform response for over 18 months. Consequently, we identify perovskite CsPbBr3 semiconductor as an exceptional candidate for new-generation high-energy γ-ray detection.

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Fig. 1: Asymmetric device designs and their γ-ray response.
Fig. 2: Comparison of ambipolar and unipolar CsPbBr3 devices.
Fig. 3: Crystal growth and charge transport properties.
Fig. 4: Device performance from an optimized planar MSM-type detector.
Fig. 5: Thermal stability of CsPbBr3 devices.

Data availability

The data that support the plots within this paper and other findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.


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This work was supported by the Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Research and Development under contract no. DE-AC02-06CH11357 (Argonne National Laboratory). The project or effort depicted was sponsored in part by the Department of the Defense, Defense Threat Reduction Agency under award HDTRA1-20-2-0002. The content of the information does not necessarily reflect the position or the policy of the federal government, and no official endorsement should be inferred.

Author information




M.G.K. and Y.H. conceived the experiments. Y.H. and D.Y.C. synthesized, characterized and grew the single crystals. Y.H. fabricated the devices and characterized detector performance. I.H., W.K. and D.G.C. helped to evaporate the electrodes. M.P., C.L. and Z.H. performed the pixelated detector characterization at the University of Michigan. Z.L. and B.W.W. conducted the weighting potential calculation. I.S. performed the contact angle measurement and analysis. Y.H., Z.L., M.P. and M.G.K. wrote the manuscript. All authors discussed the results and commented on the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Mercouri G. Kanatzidis.

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Supplementary Information

Supplementary Figs. 1–27, Tables 1–3, Appendices A and B and references 1–28.

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He, Y., Petryk, M., Liu, Z. et al. CsPbBr3 perovskite detectors with 1.4% energy resolution for high-energy γ-rays. Nat. Photonics 15, 36–42 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41566-020-00727-1

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