Physics of Short-Gate GaAs MESFET's from Hydrostatic Pressure Studies

Richard A. Kiehl, Gordon C. Osbourn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The use of hydrostatic pressure to study the physics of a GaAs MESFET is reported for the first time. Two aspects of the physics of conventional 1-μm gate structures are focused upon: 1) the possible role played by hot-electron effects in the drain-current saturation and 2) the physical mechanism responsible for excess current. The pressure dependence of the low-field conductance, current-voltage characteristics, and VHF noise properties of the MESFET are examined and compared to those of a Gunn diode. The results show that hot-electron effects are similar in the two devices, thereby providing new evidence that current saturation is associated with Gunn domain formation. The results also suggest that the excess current at large gate voltages is due to electron injection into the substrate under the source side of the gate, rather than to other proposed mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)977-983
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Transactions on Electron Devices
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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