This article has an erratum: [erratum]

Europhys. Lett.
Volume 73, Number 6, March 2006
Page(s) 934 - 940
Section Condensed matter: electronic structure, electrical, magnetic, and optical properties
Published online 15 February 2006
Europhys. Lett., 73 (6), pp. 934-940 (2006)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2005-10484-4

Suppressed absolute negative conductance and generation of high-frequency radiation in semiconductor superlattices

K. N. Alekseev1, M. V. Gorkunov1, 2, N. V. Demarina3, T. Hyart1, N. V. Alexeeva1 and A. V. Shorokhov1

1  Department of Physical Sciences, University of Oulu P.O. Box 3000, 90014 Oulu, Finland
2  Institute of Crystallography, Russian Academy of Sciences - Moscow 119333, Russia
3  Nizhny Novgorod State University - 603950 Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

received 14 November 2005; accepted in final form 26 January 2006
published online 15 February 2006

We show that space-charge instabilities (electric-field domains) in semiconductor superlattices are the attribute of absolute negative conductance induced by small constant and large alternating electric fields. We propose an efficient method for the suppression of this destructive phenomenon in order to obtain the generation at microwave and THz frequencies in devices operating at room temperature. We theoretically proved that an unbiased superlattice with a moderate doping subjected to a microwave pump field provides a strong gain at the third, seventh, etc. harmonics of the pump frequency under conditions of suppressed domains.

73.21.Cd - Superlattices.
72.20.Ht - High-field and nonlinear effects.
07.57.Hm - Infrared, submillimeter wave, microwave, and radiowave sources.

© EDP Sciences 2006