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There exists a long-term need for foreign substrates on which to grow GaSb-based optoelectronic devices. We address this need by using interfacial misfit arrays to grow GaSb-based thermophotovoltaic cells directly on GaAs (001) substrates and demonstrate promising performance. We compare these cells to control devices grown on GaSb substrates to assess device properties and material quality. The room temperature dark current densities show similar characteristics for both cells on GaAs and on GaSb. Under solar simulation the cells on GaAs exhibit an open-circuit voltage of 0.121 V and a short-circuit current density of 15.5 mA/cm2. In addition, the cells on GaAs substrates maintain 10% difference in spectral response to those of the control cells over a large range of wavelengths. While the cells on GaSb substrates in general offer better performance than the cells on GaAs substrates, the cost-savings and scalability offered by GaAs substrates could potentially outweigh the reduction in performance. By further optimizing GaSb buffer growth on GaAs substrates, Sb-based compound semiconductors grown on GaAs substrates with similar performance to devices grown directly on GaSb substrates could be realized.

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This document was originally published by the American Institute of Physics in Applied Physics Letters. Copyright restrictions may apply. doi: 10.1063/1.4915258

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