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Electrical Tailoring of Tunnel Diode Peak Current

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000095055D
Original Publication Date: 1965-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-06
Document File: 1 page(s) / 11K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Butler, JH: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

The peak current of the tunnel diode is governed by the area and doping of the tunneling junction. This junction is commonly formed by alloying a metallic dot containing an impurity dopant with an oppositely doped crystal substrate. The peak currents of similar tunnel diodes can differ from one another by as much as a factor of two after alloying.

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Electrical Tailoring of Tunnel Diode Peak Current

The peak current of the tunnel diode is governed by the area and doping of the tunneling junction. This junction is commonly formed by alloying a metallic dot containing an impurity dopant with an oppositely doped crystal substrate. The peak currents of similar tunnel diodes can differ from one another by as much as a factor of two after alloying.

This method of tailoring the peak current of a tunnel diode utilizes electrical degradation phenomenon. Electrical degradation is the gradual decrease in the peak current of the tunnel diode with time as a forward injection current passes through the tunneling junction. The degradation of the peak current is strongly dependent on the magnitude of the forward current density and the operating temperature of the junction.

In this tailoring method, the following procedure is used. The tunnel diode is heated to a relatively high temperature, preferably in the range of 100 degrees to 150 degrees C. There is applied to the resultant heated diode a forward bias voltage of a magnitude to operate the diode above the negative region. The peak current is monitored and the forward bias is removed when the peak current reaches the desired value.

The method is in essence a controlled and accelerated aging of the tunnel diode to a state in which further use of the diode does not cause appreciable variance of the peak current.

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