Thursday, January 14, 2010

SiOnyx Competition Coming?

Hamamatsu Photonics has developed the world’s first commercially available IR-enhanced silicon photodiodes with greater sensitivity in the near-infrared region from 950 nm to 1100 nm than conventional silicon photodiodes. The enhanced infrared sensitivity is achieved through the use of Hamamatsu’s proprietary laser processing technology to produce sensitivity-boosting microstructures on the silicon surface.

To me this sounds a lot similar to SiOnyx claims. While SiOnyx mostly talks about photoresistor structure with huge photoresistive gain, Hamamatsu sensor is a photodiode. Still, the trick to apply laser processing to create surface microstructures seems to be quite similar.

Hamamatsu targets to mass produce various types of inexpensive and easy-to-use silicon detectors with enhanced infrared sensitivity. Application areas are expected to include security, optical communications, thermal measurement, and fluorescence photometry.


  1. As I understand it, there are two independent mechanisms in black silicon.
    - Intrinsic gain from photoconductive effect
    - Extended spectral range from physical chemistry and surface modification

    Both are promising attributes. Hamamatsu obviously agrees.

    Nice materials innovation

  2. But more microstructures on the surface will give rise to more stress and more surface area, any idea what is going to happen with the leakage current ?

  3. Dark current is not important...unless somebody actually wants to use the product.


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