Analysis of InGaAs/InAlAs Optoelectronic Mixers for Fuze and LADAR

Report No. ARL-TR-5071
Authors: Neal K. Bambha, Justin R. Bickford, Stephen Drew, and Nuri W. Emanetgolua
Date/Pages: March 2010; 22 pages
Abstract: We are developing a symmetric gain optoelectronic mixer for chirped-FM laser detection and ranging systems (LADAR) operating in the 1.55 µm wavelength range. Signal processing of a chirped-FM LADAR system is simplified if the photodetector in the receiver is used as an optoelectronic mixer (OEM). Adding gain to the optoelectronic mixer allows a reduction of the following transimpedance amplifier's gain, increasing bandwidth and improving the system's noise performance. The symmetric gain optoelectronic mixer is based on a symmetric heterojunction phototransistor. The base layer is indium gallium arsenide (In0.53Ga0.47As), and the emitter/collector layer is In0.48Al0.52As. Two-dimensional simulations of the devices were carried out to analyze device performance. Two sample heterostructures were grown using molecular beam epitaxy. We are currently in the prototype development stage. Simulation results and preliminary results from the initial batch of devices are presented. These symmetric gain optoelectronic mixer devices can lead to a miniaturized LADAR-on-chip system. Such a system will have many military and civilian applications, such as range finding, terrain mapping, reconnaissance, and face recognition.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: March 1, 2010