In this paper, we describe the design, optimization and fabrication of side-illuminated p-i-n photodetectors, grown on InP substrate, suitable for surface hybrid integration in low-cost modules. The targeted functionalities of these photodetectors were a very high responsivity at 1.3-and 1.55-µm wavelengths and quasi-independent on the optical polarization, and had a high alignment tolerance. Moreover, in order to avoid any reliability problem, the principle of evanescent coupling was adopted. Two photodetectors were optimized, fabricated, and tested; the first was for classical cleaved fiber, and the second was for lensed fiber. Because the considered epitaxial structures were complicated to optimize, the method of the genetic algorithm was used, associated with a beam propagation method (BPM). The photodetectors are based on multimode diluted waveguides, which are promising structures in the field of optoelectronics and integrated optics. Starting from the presented comparisons between experimental and theoretical results, the interest of the design method is discussed and the complete performances of newly fabricated devices are presented. The aspect of the cutoff frequency is also considered.
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