1992-08-03

Neutron, Gamma Ray, and Temperature Effects on the Electrical Characteristics of Thyristors 929115

Experimental data showing the effects of neutrons, gamma rays, and temperature on the electrical and switching characteristics of phase-control and inverter-type SCRs are presented. The special test fixture built for mounting, heating, and instrumenting the test devices is described. Four SCRs were neutron irradiated at 300 K and four at 365 K for fluences up to 3.2 × 1013 n/cm2, and eight were gamma irradiated at 300 K only for gamma doses up to 5.1 Mrads. The electrical measurements were made during irradiation and the switching measurements were made only before and after irradiation. Radiation induced crystal defects, resulting primarily from fast neutrons, caused the reduction of minority carrier lifetime through the generation of R-G centers. The reduction in lifetime caused increases in the on-state voltage drop and in the reverse and forward leakage currents, and decreases in the turn-off time.

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