Matching Items (24)

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A Review of Gallium Nitride HEMTs to Improve CubeSat EPS Efficiency

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This paper reviews several current designs of Cube Satellite (CubeSat) Electrical Power Systems (EPS) based on Silicon FET technologies and their current deficiencies, such as radiation-incurred defects and switching power

This paper reviews several current designs of Cube Satellite (CubeSat) Electrical Power Systems (EPS) based on Silicon FET technologies and their current deficiencies, such as radiation-incurred defects and switching power losses. A strategy to fix these is proposed by the way of using Gallium Nitride (GaN) High Electron-Mobility Transistors (HEMTs) as switching devices within Buck/Boost Converters and other regulators. This work summarizes the EPS designs of several CubeSat missions, classifies them, and outlines their efficiency. An in-depth example of an EPS is also given, explaining the process in which these systems are designed. Areas of deficiency are explained along with reasoning as to why GaN can mitigate these losses, including its wide bandgap properties such as high RDS(on) and High Breakdown Voltage. Special design considerations must be kept in mind when using GaN HEMTs in this application and an example of a CubeSat using GaN HEMTs is mentioned. Finally, challenges ahead for GaN are explored including manufacturing considerations and long-term reliability.

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  • 2017-05

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Design and Development of High Performance III-Nitrides Photovoltaics

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Wurtzite (In, Ga, Al) N semiconductors, especially InGaN material systems, demonstrate immense promises for the high efficiency thin film photovoltaic (PV) applications for future generation. Their unique and intriguing merits

Wurtzite (In, Ga, Al) N semiconductors, especially InGaN material systems, demonstrate immense promises for the high efficiency thin film photovoltaic (PV) applications for future generation. Their unique and intriguing merits include continuously tunable wide band gap from 0.70 eV to 3.4 eV, strong absorption coefficient on the order of ∼105 cm−1, superior radiation resistance under harsh environment, and high saturation velocities and high mobility. Calculation from the detailed balance model also revealed that in multi-junction (MJ) solar cell device, materials with band gaps higher than 2.4 eV are required to achieve PV efficiencies greater than 50%, which is practically and easily feasible for InGaN materials. Other state-of-art modeling on InGaN solar cells also demonstrate great potential for applications of III-nitride solar cells in four-junction solar cell devices as well as in the integration with a non-III-nitride junction in multi-junction devices.

This dissertation first theoretically analyzed loss mechanisms and studied the theoretical limit of PV performance of InGaN solar cells with a semi-analytical model. Then three device design strategies are proposed to study and improve PV performance: band polarization engineering, structural design and band engineering. Moreover, three physical mechanisms related to high temperature performance of InGaN solar cells have been thoroughly investigated: thermal reliability issue, enhanced external quantum efficiency (EQE) and conversion efficiency with rising temperatures and carrier dynamics and localization effects inside nonpolar m-plane InGaN quantum wells (QWs) at high temperatures. In the end several future work will also be proposed.

Although still in its infancy, past and projected future progress of device design will ultimately achieve this very goal that III-nitride based solar cells will be indispensable for today and future’s society, technologies and society.

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Date Created
  • 2020

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Developing ohmic contacts to Gallium Nitride for high temperature applications

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Gallium Nitride (GaN), being a wide-bandgap semiconductor, shows its advantage over the conventional semiconductors like Silicon and Gallium Arsenide for high temperature applications, especially in the temperature range from 300°C

Gallium Nitride (GaN), being a wide-bandgap semiconductor, shows its advantage over the conventional semiconductors like Silicon and Gallium Arsenide for high temperature applications, especially in the temperature range from 300°C to 600°C. Development of stable ohmic contacts to GaN with low contact resistivity has been identified as a prerequisite to the success of GaN high temperature electronics. The focus of this work was primarily derived from the requirement of an appropriate metal contacts to work with GaN-based hybrid solar cell operating at high temperature.

Alloyed Ti/Al/Ni/Au contact and non-alloyed Al/Au contact were developed to form low-resistivity contacts to n-GaN and their stability at high temperature were studied. The alloyed Ti/Al/Ni/Au contact offered a specific contact resistivity (ρc) of 6×10-6 Ω·cm2 at room temperature measured the same as the temperature increased to 400°C. No significant change in ρc was observed after the contacts being subjected to 400°C, 450°C, 500°C, 550°C, and 600°C, respectively, for at least 4 hours in air. Since several device technology prefer non-alloyed contacts Al/Au metal stack was applied to form the contacts to n-type GaN. An initial ρc of 3×10-4 Ω·cm2, measured after deposition, was observed to continuously reduce under thermal stress at 400°C, 450°C, 500°C, 550°C, and 600°C, respectively, finally stabilizing at 5×10-6 Ω·cm2. Both the alloyed and non-alloyed metal contacts showed exceptional capability of stable operation at temperature as high as 600°C in air with low resistivity ~10-6 Ω·cm2, with ρc lowering for the non-alloyed contacts with high temperatures.

The p-GaN contacts showed remarkably superior ohmic behavior at elevated temperatures. Both ρc and sheet resistance (Rsh) of p-GaN decreased by a factor of 10 as the ambient temperature increased from room temperature to 390°C. The annealed Ni/Au contact showed ρc of 2×10-3 Ω·cm2 at room temperature, reduced to 1.6×10-4 Ω·cm2 at 390°C. No degradation was observed after the contacts being subjected to 450°C in air for 48 hours. Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) contacts, which has been widely used as current spreading layer in GaN-base optoelectronic devices, measured an initial ρc [the resistivity of the ITO/p-GaN interface, since the metal/ITO ρc is negligible] of 1×10-2 Ω·cm2 at room temperature. No degradation was observed after the contact being subjected to 450°C in air for 8 hours.

Accelerated life testing (ALT) was performed to further evaluate the contacts stability at high temperatures quantitatively. The ALT results showed that the annealed Ni/Au to p-GaN contacts is more stable in nitrogen ambient, with a lifetime of 2,628 hours at 450°C which is approximately 12 times longer than that at 450°C in air.

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  • 2016

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Optical characterization of III nitride semiconductors using cathodoluminescence techniques

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Group III-nitride semiconductors have attracted much attention for applications on high brightness light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and laser diodes (LDs) operating in the visible and ultra-violet spectral range using indium gallium

Group III-nitride semiconductors have attracted much attention for applications on high brightness light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and laser diodes (LDs) operating in the visible and ultra-violet spectral range using indium gallium nitride in the active layer. However, the device efficiency in the green to red range is limited by quantum-confined Stark effects resulting from the lattice mismatch between GaN and InGaN. In this dissertation, the optical and micro-structural properties of GaN-based light emitting structures have been analyzed and correlated by utilizing cathodoluminescence and transmission electron microscopy techniques. In the first section, optimization of the design of GaN-based lasers diode structures is presented. The thermal strain present in the GaN underlayer grown on sapphire substrates causes a strain-induced wavelength shift. The insertion of an InGaN waveguide mitigates the mismatch strain at the interface between the InGaN quantum well and the GaN quantum barrier. The second section of the thesis presents a study of the characteristics of thick non-polar m-plane InGaN films and of LED structures containing InGaN quantum wells, which minimize polarization-related electric fields. It is found that in some cases the in-plane piezoelectric fields can still occur due to the existence of misfit dislocations which break the continuity of the film. In the final section, the optical and structural properties of InGaAlN quaternary alloys are analyzed and correlated. The composition of the components of the film is accurately determined by Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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Growth of InGaN nanorings via metal organic chemical vapor deposition

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III-Nitride nanostructures have been an active area of research recently due to their ability to tune their optoelectronic properties. Thus far work has been done on InGaN quantum dots, nanowires,

III-Nitride nanostructures have been an active area of research recently due to their ability to tune their optoelectronic properties. Thus far work has been done on InGaN quantum dots, nanowires, nanopillars, amongst other structures, but this research reports the creation of a new type of InGaN nanostructure, nanorings. Hexagonal InGaN nanorings were formed using Metal Organic Chemical Vapor Deposition through droplet epitaxy. The nanorings were thoroughly analyzed using x-ray diffraction, photoluminescence, electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and atomic force microscopy. Nanorings with high indium incorporation were achieved with indium content up to 50% that was then controlled using the growth time, temperature, In/Ga ratio and III/N ratio. The analysis showed that the nanoring shape is able to incorporate more indium than other nanostructures, due to the relaxing mechanism involved in the formation of the nanoring. The ideal conditions were determined to be growth of 30 second droplets with a growth time of 1 minute 30 seconds at 770 C to achieve the most well developed rings with the highest indium concentration.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Analysis of heat dissipation in AlGaN/GaN HEMT with GaN micropits at GaN-SiC interface

Description

Gallium Nitride (GaN) based microelectronics technology is a fast growing and most exciting semiconductor technology in the fields of high power and high frequency electronics. Excellent electrical properties of GaN

Gallium Nitride (GaN) based microelectronics technology is a fast growing and most exciting semiconductor technology in the fields of high power and high frequency electronics. Excellent electrical properties of GaN such as high carrier concentration and high carrier motility makes GaN based high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) a preferred choice for RF applications. However, a very high temperature in the active region of the GaN HEMT leads to a significant degradation of the device performance by effecting carrier mobility and concentration. Thus, thermal management in GaN HEMT in an effective manner is key to this technology to reach its full potential.

In this thesis, an electro-thermal model of an AlGaN/GaN HEMT on a SiC substrate is simulated using Silvaco (Atlas) TCAD tools. Output characteristics, current density and heat flow at the GaN-SiC interface are key areas of analysis in this work. The electrical characteristics show a sharp drop in drain currents for higher drain voltages. Temperature profile across the device is observed. At the interface of GaN-SiC, there is a sharp drop in temperature indicating a thermal resistance at this interface. Adding to the existing heat in the device, this difference heat is reflected back into the device, further increasing the temperatures in the active region. Structural changes such as GaN micropits, were introduced at the GaN-SiC interface along the length of the device, to make the heat flow smooth rather than discontinuous. With changing dimensions of these micropits, various combinations were tried to reduce the temperature and enhance the device performance. These GaN micropits gave effective results by reducing heat in active region, by spreading out the heat on to the sides of the device rather than just concentrating right below the hot spot. It also helped by allowing a smooth flow of heat at the GaN-SiC interface. There was an increased peak current density in the active region of the device contributing to improved electrical characteristics. In the end, importance of thermal management in these high temperature devices is discussed along with future prospects and a conclusion of this thesis.

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Date Created
  • 2016

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Polarization and electronic state configuration of III-N surfaces and plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposited dielectric interfaces

Description

GaN and AlGaN have shown great potential in next-generation power and RF electronics. However, these devices are limited by reliability issues such as leakage current and current collapse that result

GaN and AlGaN have shown great potential in next-generation power and RF electronics. However, these devices are limited by reliability issues such as leakage current and current collapse that result from surface and interface states on GaN and AlGaN. This dissertation, therefore, examined these electronic states, focusing on the following two points:

First, the surface electronic state configuration was examined with regards to the polarization bound 1013 charges/cm2 that increases with aluminum content. This large bound charge requires compensation either externally by surface states or internally by the space charge regions as relates to band bending. In this work, band bending was measured after different surface treatments of GaN and AlGaN to determine the effects of specific surface states on the electronic state configuration. Results showed oxygen-terminated N-face GaN, Ga-face GaN, and Ga-face Al0.25Ga0.75N surface were characterized by similar band bending regardless of the polarization bound charge, suggesting a Fermi level pinning state ~0.4-0.8 eV below the conduction band minimum. On oxygen-free Ga-face GaN, Al0.15Ga0.85N, Al0.25Ga0.75N, and Al0.35Ga0.65N, band bending increased slightly with aluminum content and thus did not exhibit the same pinning behavior; however, there was still significant compensating charge on these surfaces (~1013 charges/cm2). This charge is likely related to nitrogen vacancies and/or gallium dangling bonds.

In addition, this wozrk investigated the interface electronic state configuration of dielectric/GaN and AlGaN interfaces with regards to deposition conditions and aluminum content. Specifically, oxygen plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposited (PEALD) was used to deposit SiO2. Growth temperature was shown to influence the film quality, where room temperature deposition produced the highest quality films in terms of electrical breakdown. In addition, the valence band offsets (VBOs) appeared to decrease with the deposition temperature, which likely related to an electric field across the Ga2O3 interfacial layer. VBOs were also determined with respect to aluminum content at the PEALD-SiO2/AlxGa1-xN interface, giving 3.0, 2.9, 2.9, and 2.8 eV for 0%, 15%, 25%, and 35% aluminum content, respectively—with corresponding conduction band offsets of 2.5, 2.2, 1.9, and 1.8 eV. This suggests the largest difference manifests in the conduction band, which is in agreement with the charge neutrality level model.

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Date Created
  • 2015

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Optical Properties of III-Nitride Semiconductors for Power Electronics and Photovoltaics

Description

This dissertation covers my doctoral research on the cathodoluminescence (CL) study of the optical properties of III-niride semiconductors.

The first part of this thesis focuses on the optical properties of

This dissertation covers my doctoral research on the cathodoluminescence (CL) study of the optical properties of III-niride semiconductors.

The first part of this thesis focuses on the optical properties of Mg-doped gallium nitride (GaN:Mg) epitaxial films. GaN is an emerging material for power electronics, especially for high power and high frequency applications. Compared to traditional Si-based devices, GaN-based devices offer superior breakdown properties, faster switching speed, and reduced system size. Some of the current device designs involve lateral p-n junctions which require selective-area doping. Dopant distribution in the selectively-doped regions is a critical issue that can impact the device performance. While most studies on Mg doping in GaN have been reported for epitaxial grown on flat c-plane substrates, questions arise regarding the Mg doping efficiency and uniformity in selectively-doped regions, where growth on surfaces etched away from the exact c-plane orientation is involved. Characterization of doping concentration distribution in lateral structures using secondary ion mass spectroscopy lacks the required spatial resolution. In this work, visualization of acceptor distribution in GaN:Mg epilayers grown by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) was achieved at sub-micron scale using CL imaging. This was enabled by establishing a correlation among the luminescence characteristics, acceptor concentration, and electrical conductivity of GaN:Mg epilayers. Non-uniformity in acceptor distribution has been observed in epilayers grown on mesa structures and on miscut substrates. It is shown that non-basal-plane surfaces, such as mesa sidewalls and surface step clusters, promotes lateral growth along the GaN basal planes with a reduced Mg doping efficiency. The influence of surface morphology on the Mg doping efficiency in GaN has been studied.

The second part of this thesis focuses on the optical properties of InGaN for photovoltaic applications. The effects of thermal annealing and low energy electron beam irradiation (LEEBI) on the optical properties of MOCVD-grown In0.14Ga0.86N films were studied. A multi-fold increase in luminescence intensity was observed after 800 °C thermal annealing or LEEBI treatment. The mechanism leading to the luminescence intensity increase has been discussed. This study shows procedures that significantly improve the luminescence efficiency of InGaN, which is important for InGaN-based optoelectronic devices.

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Date Created
  • 2020

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Mobility Modeling of Gallium Nitride Nanowires

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Semiconductor nanowires have the potential to emerge as the building blocks of next generation field-effect transistors, logic gates, solar cells and light emitting diodes. Use of Gallium Nitride (GaN) and

Semiconductor nanowires have the potential to emerge as the building blocks of next generation field-effect transistors, logic gates, solar cells and light emitting diodes. Use of Gallium Nitride (GaN) and other wide bandgap materials combines the advantages of III-nitrides along with the enhanced mobility offered by 2-dimensional confinement present in nanowires. The focus of this thesis is on developing a low field mobility model for a GaN nanowire using Ensemble Monte Carlo (EMC) techniques. A 2D Schrödinger-Poisson solver and a one-dimensional Monte Carlo solver is developed for an Aluminum Gallium Nitride/Gallium Nitride Heterostructure nanowire. A GaN/AlN/AlGaN heterostructure device is designed which creates 2-dimensional potential well for electrons. The nanowire is treated as a quasi-1D system in this work. A self-consistent 2D Schrödinger-Poisson solver is designed which determines the subband energies and the corresponding wavefunctions of the confined system. Three scattering mechanisms: acoustic phonon scattering, polar optical phonon scattering and piezoelectric scattering are considered to account for the electron phonon interactions in the system. Overlap integrals and 1D scattering rate expressions are derived for all the mechanisms listed. A generic one-dimensional Monte Carlo solver is also developed. Steady state results from the 1D Monte Carlo solver are extracted to determine the low field mobility of the GaN nanowires.

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  • 2017

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Nanoscale Electronic Properties in GaN Based Structures for Power Electronics Using Electron Microscopy

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The availability of bulk gallium nitride (GaN) substrates has generated great interest in the development of vertical GaN-on-GaN power devices. The vertical devices made of GaN have not been able

The availability of bulk gallium nitride (GaN) substrates has generated great interest in the development of vertical GaN-on-GaN power devices. The vertical devices made of GaN have not been able to reach their true potential due to material growth related issues. Power devices typically have patterned p-n, and p-i junctions in lateral, and vertical direction relative to the substrate. Identifying the variations from the intended layer design is crucial for failure analysis of the devices. A most commonly used dopant profiling technique, secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS), does not have the spatial resolution to identify the dopant distribution in patterned devices. The possibility of quantitative dopant profiling at a sub-micron scale for GaN in a scanning electron microscope (SEM) is discussed. The total electron yield in an SEM is shown to be a function of dopant concentration which can potentially be used for quantitative dopant profiling.

Etch-and-regrowth is a commonly employed strategy to generate the desired patterned p-n and p-i junctions. The devices involving etch-and-regrowth have poor performance characteristics like high leakage currents, and lower breakdown voltages. This is due to damage induced by the dry etching process, and the nature of the regrowth interface, which is important to understand in order to address the key issue of leakage currents in etched and regrown devices. Electron holography is used for electrostatic potential profiling across the regrowth interfaces to identify the charges introduced by the etching process. SIMS is used to identify the impurities introduced at the interfaces due to etch-and-regrowth process.

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Date Created
  • 2019