CMOS integrated avalanche photodiodes and frequency-mixing optical sensor front end for portable NIR spectroscopy instruments

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tufts University, Medford, MA 02155, USA.
Conference proceedings: ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference 08/2011; 2011:10-3. DOI: 10.1109/IEMBS.2011.6089884
Source: PubMed


This paper presents the design and measurement results of two avalanche photodiode structures (APDs) and a novel frequency-mixing transimpedance amplifier (TIA), which are key building blocks towards a monolithically integrated optical sensor front end for near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy applications. Two different APD structures are fabricated in an unmodified 0.18 \im CMOS process, one with a shallow trench isolation (STI) guard ring and the other with a P-well guard ring. The APDs are characterized in linear mode. The STI bounded APD demonstrates better performance and exhibits 3.78 A/W responsivity at a wavelength of 690 nm and bias voltage of 10.55 V. The frequency-mixing TIA (FM-TIA) employs a T-feedback network incorporating gate-controlled transistors for resistance modulation, enabling the simultaneous down-conversion and amplification of the high frequency modulated photodiode (PD) current. The TIA achieves 92 dS Ω conversion gain with 0.5 V modulating voltage. The measured IIP(3) is 10.6/M. The amplifier together with the 50 Ω output buffer draws 23 mA from a1.8 V power supply.

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