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Utilizing Photocurrent Transients for Dithiolene-Based Photodetection: Stepwise Improvements at Communications Relevant Wavelengths

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journal contribution
posted on 01.08.2012 by Simon Dalgleish, Michio M. Matsushita, Laigui Hu, Bo Li, Hirofumi Yoshikawa, Kunio Awaga
Photodetection based on bis-(4-dimethylaminodithiobenzil)-Ni­(II) (BDN), a representative and well-studied metal dithiolene that shows strong absorption in the near-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum, has been investigated. By adopting a metal/insulator/semiconductor/metal (MISM) structure, the peak photocurrent response to an oscillating light chain is increased by up to 50 times, compared to devices without an insulating layer. The transient form of the MISM photoresponse, while unsuitable for steady-state photodetection, can be used to detect periodic light signals of frequencies up to 1 MHz, and is thus applicable for optical communication. Further improvements have been realized by nanostructuring carbon black into the dithiolene layer, improving charge collection, and yielding detectivity of up to 1.6 × 1011 Jones at wavelengths beyond the scope of silicon photodiodes. Such an architecture may allow the favorable absorption properties of other such metal dithiolenes to be harnessed, where their low charge carrier mobilities and short excitation lifetimes have previously limited their applicability to this field.