How to Handle and Process an Avalanche Photodiode

An avalanche photodiode is a powerful photodiode that converts light into electricity using the photoelectric effect. The photodiodes are specially designed to be used in applications where other varieties of photodiodes are inefficient. They are most reliable in situations that require sensitive light detection. The use of the avalanche process enhances their performance.

The diodes are specially designed with a delicate material that requires electronic components during storage and transportation. When exposed to extraordinary stress or corrosive gases, they get damaged. Therefore, manufacturers or users of these diodes need to be very careful while handling and processing an avalanche diode. Below are some tips for applying while handling APDs.


ADPs should always be stored within the temperature specifications of the manufacturer. High humidity also damages the material used to manufacture ADPs. During transportation, ADPs should not, in any way, be exposed to high humidity. Storage should, therefore, be in a cool and dry place.


Mechanized cleaning is not recommended while cleaning the components and subassemblies of ADPs. It is always advisable to use non-aggressive agents to do the cleaning process. Removing some materials may be necessary after the process. Cleaning epoxy surfaces is rare.  However, silicone surfaces should not be cleaned. For further instructions on cleaning, always conduct the manufacturer.

Protecting surfaces and optical windows.

The surfaces of the materials used to manufacture ADPs are very delicate and have to be kept away from contamination. Touching the surfaces with fingers may cause damage. While handling the components of ADPs it is always advisable to use tools that will not leave them with scratches and dents. Vacuum tools should not be used while handling silicon resin surfaces because of the delicate material used during manufacturing.

Processing bare dies

If contaminated, bare dies can result in undesirable failures. Dies don’t withstand mechanical stress. They should therefore be handled with highly trained experts with exceptional experience in handling them, especially contractors from the packaging manufacturers. The use of appropriate tools while handling dies should also be a top preference. Tools used by experts should also be cleaned regularly. Waffle packs or foils should be used while touching single foils to prevent the edges of the dies from being in contact.


Soldering of materials used to make ADPs should be done using convection conveyor surfaces with a temperature not exceeding 250 °C. If the soldering exceeds 220 °C, it should not take more than a minute. The soldering should be done by an outstanding expert with vast experience and knowledge. While soldering, the housing of the component should not be touched. However, soldering should not be done more times than those specified by the manufacturer.

The delicate nature of an Avalanche photodiode calls for keenness when handling any of its components. Apart from the listed safety measures, it is always advisable to follow the manufacturer’s guide. Guides provide more information, including fixing difficulties such as image recognition. Being careful with ADPs increases their lifespans and efficiency.