Applied Physics A

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 125–132 | Cite as

Impact ionisation probability in InSb

  • J. T. Devreese
  • R. G. van Welzenis
  • R. P. Evrard
Contributed Papers


An exact analytical expression for the impact ionisation probability for the main ionisation process in a semiconductor with a Kane-type bandstructure is derived. In a parabolic approximation the integrals involved can be evaluated and the result reduces to the simple relationv i (E)=C(EE i )2Θ(EE i ) whereC is a material constant related to the transition matrix elements. From experimental results on the photo-quantum efficiency we can estimate the value ofC for InSb near 77 K, i.e.ħC ≈ 0.012 eV−1. It is concluded that the impact ionisation probability cannot be described with a unit step function at the threshold energy as was done in many theories on the avalanche effect. The (effective) threshold is smooth and a more detailed description, as derived here, is necessary.




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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. T. Devreese
    • 1
    • 2
  • R. G. van Welzenis
    • 1
  • R. P. Evrard
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsEindhoven University of TechnologyMB EindhovenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.University of Antwerpen (RUCA and UIA)Belgium
  3. 3.Institut de PhysiqueUniversité de l'Etat à LiègeLiègeBelgium

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