InAs/GaSb and InAs/InAsSb type II superlattices have been proposed as promising alternatives to HgCdTe for the photon absorbing layer of an infrared detector. When combined with a barrier layer based on an InAs/AlSb superlattice or a AlSbAs alloy, respectively, they can be used to make diffusion limited "barrier" detectors with very low dark currents. In this work we compare theoretical simulations with experimental bandgap and photoabsorption data for such superlattices, spanning from the mid- to the long-wave infra-red (2.3-12 μm). The spectral response of detectors based on these materials is also simulated. The simulations are based on a version of the k ∙ p model developed by one of the authors, which takes interface contributions and bandgap bowing into account. Our results provide a way of assessing the relative merits of InAs/GaSb and InAs/InAsSb superlattices as potential detector materials.
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