An ultrafast Geiger-mode single photon avalanche diode in 0.18 μm CMOS technology

Hod Finkelstein, Mark J. Hsu, Sadik Esener

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Scopus citations


We demonstrate a new single-photon avalanche diode (SPAD) device, which utilizes the silicon-dioxide shallow-trench isolation ( STI) structure common to all deep-submicron CMOS technologies, both for junction planarization and as an area-efficient guard-ring. This makes it possible to achieve an order-of-magnitude improvement in fill factor and a significant reduction in pixel area compared with existing CMOS SPADs, and results in improved SPAD performance. We present numerical simulations as well preliminary experimental results from a test chip, which was manufactured in an IBM 0.18 μm CMOS technology, and which incorporates the devices. With these new and efficient structures, 12 μm-pitch pixels with sub-10ns dead times are achievable without requiring active recharge, creating the opportunity to integrate large arrays of these ultra-fast SPADs for use in biological imaging systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvanced Photon Counting Techniques
StatePublished - Dec 1 2006
Externally publishedYes
EventAdvanced Photon Counting Techniques - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: Oct 1 2006Oct 3 2006

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherAdvanced Photon Counting Techniques
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBoston, MA


  • Avalanche breakdown
  • Avalanche photodiodes
  • Biological imaging
  • Photodetectors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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