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Low gap superconducting single photon detectors for infrared sensitivity

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7 Author(s)
Dorenbos, S.N. ; Kavli Institute of Nanoscience, TU Delft, 2628CJ Delft, The Netherlands ; Forn-Diaz, P. ; Fuse, T. ; Verbruggen, A.H.
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The quantum efficiency of NbN and NbTiN superconducting single photon detectors drops with decreasing photon energy. A lower gap material would enable single photon detection deeper in the infrared. We have fabricated a NbSi detector and compare its characteristics with a NbTiN device. NbSi (TC≃2 K) has a smaller superconducting gap than NbTiN or NbN (TC≃15 K). We measure the detection efficiency for a wavelength range from 1100 to 1900 nm. In this range the NbSi detector shows a 10-fold increase in relative efficiency with respect to the NbTiN detector.

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Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:98 ,  Issue: 25 )