Theory of hole initiated impact ionization in bulk zincblende and wurtzite GaN

Ismail H. Ogǔzman, Enrico Bellotti, Kevin F. Brennan, Ján Kolník, Rongping Wang, P. Paul Ruden

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In this article, the first calculations of hole initiated interband impact ionization in bulk zincblende and wurtzite phase GaN are presented. The calculations are made using an ensemble Monte Carlo simulation including the full details of all of the relevant valence bands, derived from an empirical pseudopotential approach, for each crystal type. The model also includes numerically generated hole initiated impact ionization transition rates, calculated based on the pseudopotential band structure. The calculations predict that both the average hole energies and ionization coefficients are substantially higher in the zincblende phase than in the wurtzite phase. This difference is attributed to the higher valence band effective masses and equivalently higher effective density of states found in the wurtzite polytype. Furthermore, the hole ionization coefficient is found to be comparable to the previously calculated electron ionization coefficient in zincblende GaN at an applied electric field strength of 3 MV/cm. In the wurtzite phase, the electron and hole impact ionization coefficients are predicted to be similar at high electric fields, but at lower fields, the hole ionization rate appears to be greater.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7827-7834
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 1997


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