The transducer consists of a p-i’(a-SiC:H)-n/p-i(a-Si:H)-n heterostructures produced by PECVD and optimized for the detection of the fluorescence resonance energy transfer between fluorophores with excitation in the violet(400 nm) and emissions in the cyan (470 nm) and yellow (588 nm) range of the spectrum. The thickness and the absorption coefficient of the i’- and i- layers were tailored for cyan and yellow optical confinement, respectively in the front and back photodiodes acting both as optical filters. The devices were characterized through transmittance and spectral response measurements and under different electrical.
To simulate the FRET pairs and the excitation light a chromatic time dependent combination of violet, cyan and yellow wavelengths was applied to the device. The generated photocurrent was measured under negative and positive bias to readout the combined spectra. The independent test signals were chosen in order to sample all the possible chromatic. Different wavelength backgrounds were also superimposed.
Results show that under negative bias the phorocurrent signal presents eight separate levels each one assigned to the different polychromatic mixtures. If a blue background is superimposed the yellow channel is enhanced and the cyan suppressed while under red irradiation the opposite behavior occurs. So under appropriated steady state optical bias the sensor will detect separately the cyan and yellow fluorescence pairs. An electrical model, supported by a numerical simulation, gives insight into the transduction mechanism.