Abstract

A design challenge for photodiodes yielding both high speed and responsivity is the necessity to concentrate incident light into a subwavelength active volume region. Photonic nanojets have been reported in the literature as a means to focus an incident plane wave to a subwavelength-waist propagating beam with applications ranging from next-generation DVDs to characterizing subwavelength features within dielectric targets. In the present work, a new application of photonic nanojets is proposed, focusing electromagnetic energy into a photodiode. Three-dimensional finite-difference time-domain solutions are conducted to determine the advantages of photonic nanojet-enhanced photodiodes at near-infrared wavelengths (1310 nm). We find that photonic nanojets provide a factor of 26 increase in the volume-integrated electric field within the subwavelength active volume of the photodiode of size 0.0045μm3. Furthermore, this increase is achieved independent of the incident polarization and over a broad bandwidth. Photonic nanojets may thus serve as an attractive alternative to plasmonics for some applications.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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