UMBC High Performance Computing Facility
Modeling High-Current Photodetectors
Curtis Menyuk, Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering
Yue Hu, Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering
The nonlinear response of high-current photodetectors plays an important role in limiting the
performance of RF-photonic devices. Yet, the physical reasons for this nonlinear response remain
poorly understood, and the only comprehensive simulations of this effect were carried out almost a
decade ago when the computational tools and computers were far less powerful than they are now.
In particular, almost all prior work used a simple one-dimensional model of the photodetector,
which ignored the radial dependence of the light beam. We are intending to carry out work in which
we solve the drift-diffusion equations, taking into account radial effects for a high-current
p-i-n photodetector using finite-difference methods. We will be carrying out this work in
collaboration with experimental researchers at the Naval Research Laboratory.