Design of a modified Cherry-Hooper transimpedance amplifier with DC offset cancellation

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Optical receivers have many different uses covering simple infrared receivers, high speed fiber optic communication and light based instrumentation. All of them have an optical receiver that converts photons to

Optical receivers have many different uses covering simple infrared receivers, high speed fiber optic communication and light based instrumentation. All of them have an optical receiver that converts photons to current followed by a transimpedance amplifier to convert the current to a useful voltage. Different systems create different requirements for each receiver. High speed digital communication require high throughput with enough sensitivity to keep the bit error rate low. Instrumentation receivers have a lower bandwidth, but higher gain and sensitivity requirements. In this thesis an optical receiver for use in instrumentation in presented. It is an entirely monolithic design with the photodiodes on the same substrate as the CMOS circuitry. This allows for it to be built into a focal-plane array, but it places some restriction on the area. It is also designed for in-situ testing and must be able to cancel any low frequency noise caused by ambient light. The area restrictions prohibit the use of a DC blocking capacitor to reject the low frequency noise. In place a servo loop was wrapped around the system to reject any DC offset. A modified Cherry-Hooper architecture was used for the transimpedance amplifier. This provides the flexibility to create an amplifier with high gain and wide bandwidth that is independent of the input capacitance. The downside is the increased complexity of the design makes stability paramount to the design. Another drawback is the high noise associated with low input impedance that decouples the input capacitance from the bandwidth. This problem is compounded by the servo loop feed which leaves the output noise of some amplifiers directly referred to the input. An in depth analysis of each circuit block's noise contribution is presented.