Thermoelectric Cooling Solutions

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Avalanche Photodetectors

Avalanche Photodetectors (APD) - a class of quantum detectors mostly for visible and near IR spectrum ranges are widely used in measurement technology and fiber communication systems (APD).

The main feature is the avalanche multiplication of charge carriers. A photon of light causes the generation of charge carrier, as in other semiconductor photodetectors, however, due to the features of ADP semiconductor p-i-n structure, the carrier initiates the avalanche generating additional charge carriers. The multiplication factor is hundreds and thousands. This effect provides a very high sensitivity of APDs, and a high speed of response, because of the drift of the charge carriers in a strong electric field.

Like many semiconductor photodetectors with other mechanisms of operation, the APDs have strong temperature dependency of operational parameters: parasitic dark current, the multiplication factor, speed of response.

Thermoelectric cooling is widely used to increase the performance of APD:

-            cooling improves performance

-            thermostabilization for stable operation

-            Heat removal. APD itself emits little heat (no more than a few tens of milliwatts), however there are significant passive heat loads (convection, thermal conductivity).

 The APD chip are most often very miniature. Therefore, miniature multistage thermoelectric Peltier coolers (TECs) are required for thermal management.

RMT advises a wide range of miniature multi-stage TECs suitable for Avalanche Photodetectors.

All the products are manufactured in conformity with the standard of reliability Telcordia GR468 Core. The modules of RMT are fully compliant with RoHS и REACH.

Depending on the APD package design (housing), one can use a wide variety of standard sizes of multi-stage thermoelectric coolers.


TO-type packages are very common, for example, TO8.

For APDs in this package design the company RMT advises a wide range of standard thermoelectric cooling modules of the series MC04 and MC06. There are also series of micromodules with increased cooling capacities MD04 and MD06, which are suitable for miniature packages, for instance TO39.

Company RMT also advises complete solutions – TECs mounted onto standard and customized packages suitable for APD devices.

To select a suitable solution and the optimal TEC for an application, the supporting Online TEC Assistance is available at RMT’s website. For detailed modeling and calculations the company RMT provides our customers by free software TECCad or iTECPad.

And contact RMT for advice and assistance.