Impact of high-dose gamma-ray irradiation on electrical characteristics of N-polar and Ga-polar GaN p - N diodes

F. Mirkhosravi, A. Rashidi, J. Gallagher, M. Monavarian, A. Aragon, K. Ahn, Y. K. Ooi, A. Lintereur, E. K. Mace, M. A. Scarpulla, D. Feezell

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We investigate the impact of high-dose gamma-ray irradiation on the electrical performance of Ga-polar and N-polar GaN-based p-n diodes grown by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition. We compare the current density-voltage (J-V), capacitance-voltage (C-V), and circular transfer length method characteristics of the p-n diodes fabricated on Ga-polar and N-polar orientations before and after irradiation. The relative turn-on voltage increases for the Ga-polar diodes with an increasing irradiation dose, while it increases initially and then starts to decrease for the N-polar diodes. The p-contact total resistance increases for Ga-polar and decreases for N-polar samples, which we attribute to the formation of point defects and additional Mg activation after irradiation. The J-V characteristics of most of the tested diodes recovered over time, suggesting the changes in the J-V characteristics are temporary and potentially due to metastable occupancy of traps after irradiation. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and photoluminescence measurements reveal the existence of different types of initial defects and surface electronic states on Ga-polar and N-polar samples. Gallium vacancies (VGa) are dominant defects in Ga-polar samples, while nitrogen vacancies (VN) are dominant in N-polar samples. The presence of a higher concentration of surface states on Ga-polar surfaces than N-polar surfaces was confirmed by calculating the band bending and the corresponding screening effect due to opposite polarization bound charge and ionized acceptors at the surface. The difference in surface stoichiometry in these two orientations is responsible for the different behavior in electrical characteristics after gamma-ray interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number025009
JournalAIP Advances
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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